Technologically, the world is always moving forward, developing new ways to make our lives and jobs easier. In modern times, technological advancements allow us to better communicate, monitor our own health through wearable equipment, and more effectively tackle the global problem of pollution.
DevOps.com (2017) defines the term industrial revolution as “the use of sophisticated machinery to make the work of humans easier and faster”. Presently, this includes technological advancements in robotics, machine learning and artificial intelligence (among other things). While the 4th industrial revolution is currently ongoing, the 5th industrial revolution is highly anticipated (and often feared).
The 4th industrial revolution, the one we currently live in, started in the early 2000s and stems almost directly from the third; the primary focus is cyber-physical manufacturing. This era sees the increased integration of technology into people’s lives and groundbreaking advances in artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, 3D printing, genetic engineering and various other technologies. Taking into account how far technology has progressed and how fast it is developing still, the 5th industrial revolution (5IR) is predicted to further integrate the use of technology into all aspects of our lives. While AI, cryptocurrency and genetic editing have already been introduced into society, the 5IR will see further advancements in this technology. These are some of the shifts to be expected at the dawn of the 5IR.
5G – The demand for a faster internet connection is ever increasing and the connection speed that 3G and 4G provide will soon be inadequate. 5IR is expected to bring the next generation of mobile internet connectivity, 5G – a connection that will be multitudes faster than its predecessors. “At first, 5G will live beside and enhance your current 4G service, but soon enough 5G-only networks will be complete and stand-alone 5G devices will be available.” AndroidCentral (2019)
Cloud computing – Cloud computing refers to the storing of data on the internet instead of on a flash drive or hard drive. An example of cloud computing is Google Drive which gives the user 15GB free cloud storage with every Google account. This way of storing data is believed to be more secure and efficient as the account is password protected and can be accessed using any device with an internet connection.
The Internet of Things (IoT) – refers to connecting every device (washing machines, fridges, lamps, headphones, coffee makers etc) to the internet. This concept is increasingly used to describe smart devices that “talk” to each other.
Big data – refers to collecting large amounts of data from sources like business transactions, social media and information from sensor or machine-to-machine data which helps organisations identify trends and patterns. This information is used to improve what the company knows about their customers’ needs and wants, and to improve the overall user experience.
Artificial intelligence (AI) – refers to intelligent machines that are intended to work, react like and ultimately simulate human behavior. The goals of such machines include speech recognition, planning, learning and problem solving without much help from humans. While the benefits of such machines are endless, some fear that AI will ultimately lead to high unemployment rates due to machines replacing human workers. Another fear is that robots will one day be so advanced that they take over and destroy humans. While AI is a vision related to the 5th industrial revolution, the first AI robot, Sophia, has already been developed and introduced to the world.
With all these developments we need to take the time to ask ourselves how we are planning to protect ourselves, our businesses and our livelihood from cyber threats.
Introducing ISO 27001
The ISO 27001 was published in 2005 and the standard relates to information security. ISO 27001 replaced the BS 7799-2 standard, which outlined codes of practice to protect against information security threats.
What this means is that businesses that have this system in place can demonstrate to customers and partners that they are committed to the protection of their informational data such as financial information, employee information, third party data and intellectual property. The standard is relevant to any type of organisation regardless of the organisation’s size.
Why this is important to consumers
In a digital age, consumers are becoming increasingly aware of the threat of a data breaches and how their digital devices and data may be compromised. With this increased awareness, businesses can gain consumer trust and eliminate their fears by providing proof that the right systems and standards (ISO 27001) are in place and by assuring customers that real changes are being implemented to prevent such a breach.
It’s important to note that consumers are often wary of new technology and consider our growing reliance on technology as one of the top threats facing humanity over the next few decades. “Companies must put cybersecurity and privacy at the forefront of business strategy to protect their customers’ and earn their trust. Robust data governance and privacy protection policies are no longer just a nice to have,” says Muhammad Ali, Managing Director and Lead ISO Auditor for WWISE (Worldwide Industrial and Systems Engineers).
There’s no doubt that the prospect of self-driving cars, personal robots, and the transferring of the human consciousness sounds exciting and frightening (all at the same time). Without the presence of cybersecurity, everything ‘digital’ is vulnerable to a breach. “Cyber Security is the new minimum standard if you wish to survive the 5th Industrial revolution,” ends Ali.
For more information on how you can digitally secure your business with ISO 27001 contact WWISE on 08610 99473 or visit www.wwise.co.za.