Cyber Security

How Will The World Look Like In 2025 And The Future Of Cybersecurity

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The digital world offers unlimited opportunities, but it also comes with significant cybersecurity threats and risks. Let us see how the technology landscape will transform over the next five years, and with it, how cybersecurity advancements will take place to protect the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of information.

The world has been witnessing increased connectivity every year, driven by the ongoing technological revolution. Along with the increasing connectivity, critical information infrastructures are also facing a rising number of cyberattacks, which is a cause of concern for both individual and enterprise users. Malicious actors carry out these attacks with different motives – some for financial gains, and others for undermining the governments and information systems. With a massive increase in humans accessing the Internet every year, the fear of such attacks cannot be overlooked. By 2025, there will be explosive growth in Internet penetration, and its effects will be highly visible. This scenario demands the cybersecurity laws to keep pace with the overwhelming developments. The following are the trends to witness in the cybersecurity landscape by 2025:

Unequal Access To Information

Experts predict that by 2025, the information that people share over the Internet will get interwoven into their daily life activities, so much so that information flow will become invisible, like electricity. An analogy is that Internet usage will become akin to breathing. An expert from Media Psychology Research Center, Pamela Rutledge, argues that today, universal access is the term associated with phone lines. However, by 2025, access to the Internet will become a basic right. The greater access and capabilities will help bridge the digital divide and allow universal access to quality tools and digital participation skills.

GDPR Security Challenges

Source: Digitisation of the World, From Edge to Core

As is evident from the above graph, there will be an exponential explosion of data volume and typical use cases. Thus, the line separating the responsibilities of IT security teams and the regulatory frameworks will blur by 2025. GDPR or ‘General Data Protection Regulation’ is a robust regulatory framework that advocates for consumer rights, accountability obligations, and restrictions on the international flow of data. The rapid advancement in the use of AI and ML technologies will make the process trickier. Some key pointers which the GDPR policies will need to address are:

  • Legal rights for capturing and processing data.
  • Fixing responsibility for data manipulation.
  • Fixing accountability for breaches in AI-driven systems.
  • Determining the culprit – country of manufacture or country of use?

GDPR is currently introducing rules which take into account all these concerns, and which are future-proof and technologically neutral. The AI systems may keep the data unilaterally, for further evolving its service capabilities. However, inevitably, the GDPR rules will always favor the data subject, and organization’s will have to bring their AI designs in-line with the regulations.

Tech Giants Digital Domination

Quantum Computing is currently in its infancy stage, but by 2025, the world will witness commercial devices that use technology for meaningful solutions to real-world problems. It has the potential to come up as a boon for numerous sectors. It will help scientists in the healthcare sector to simulate complex chemical reactions, which will guide drug development research. The discovery of novel materials will also occur, which can become catalysts to reduce carbon emissions from vehicles and help curb the effects of global warming. Quantum computers will also help in reducing the costs of R&D. In a nutshell, tech firms will see significant growth, and they will help uplift other sectors as well. It is evident from the graph given below. On X-axis is the percentage of organisations currently adopting AI, and on Y-axis, the average percentage change required in AI spending for the next three years.

Future of AI adoption and Digital Domination

Source: McKinsey Global Institute analysis

Digital Rights Inequality

Digital Rights Management (DRM) technologies are crucial tools that help organisations secure their digital content. Experts predict that the DRM market size will expand to a whopping $4.35 billion by 2025, with a 15.12% CAGR during 2020-2025. There will be a rise in web-based data. It will enhance the necessity of streamlining the process of secure data access and management, ensuring its foolproof confidentiality and integrity. The Internet will become an integral part of people’s lives, and governments will use it to measure, monitor, and alter critical socio-economic and political policies. Organisations will change the processes and goals of the workforce. There is an inherent threat to these data collection techniques from malicious actors. However, with an open internet, they can become crowd-controlled and supplemented by traditional information sources to prevent such breaches.

Digital Privacy And Anonymity Concerns

Today, there is an increase in the volume of the regulatory environment. However, it is just the tip of the iceberg. After five years, privacy and data-centric security will reach commodity status. Giving the users the ability to control and protect their sensitive data assets will become a norm rather than an exception. The awareness and understanding of the need to upgrade the cybersecurity policies will increase, and thus, the adoption of privacy-enhancing technologies (PET) will also rise. PET will go on to become a mainstream technology category by 2025. It will become a key element in the organization’s privacy and security strategy to meet the minimum compliance threshold.

Final Words

Digital transformation and technological advancements have witnessed great potential to help solve the world’s most pressing problems, ranging from providing quality healthcare to ensuring universal educational access. However, it has also resulted in never-seen-before cybersecurity threats and cyberattacks in the last few years. The next five years are going to be critical in deciding the fate of digital technologies and cybersecurity as well. The data security sphere will also undergo drastic transformations that could well be something beyond the magnitudes and sophistication that could be conceived based on currently available knowledge. Cybersecurity is going to be paramount as organization’s will have to adopt innovative security strategies, security solutions, and techniques. They will have to innovate at an unprecedented pace to outpace cyber adversaries.

Remesh Ramachandran
Security Researcher & Consultant for the Government, Enthusiast, Malware Analyst, Penetration Tester He has been a successful participant in various bug bounty programs and discovered security flaws on major websites. He occasionally performs training and security assessments for various government, non-government and educational organizations.

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