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Future Technology Trends in Security

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Future Technology Trends in Security

Want to learn more about what the future of security technology looks like? Check out this post on one researcher's findings on the future of security.

· Security Zone ·
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Predicting the future is a notoriously fraught endeavor, but Dr. Lucy Mason has a strong pedigree in this art. After a long spell at the UK Government Office for Science’s Foresight division, she has recently moved to head up the Defence and Security Accelerator for the Ministry of Defence. As such, her recent paper on the trends in this sector deserves the attention of anyone in this field.

It begins by outlining a number of overarching trends that underpin the changes in the sector. These include an accelerating pace of innovation, rapid growth in data, technological convergence, and the automation of processes and roles by AI technologies.

It’s crucial that both the general public and policymakers have a greater awareness of the changing capabilities of modern technologies, and indeed the risks they present from a security perspective. This is especially so for policymakers as it is vital that their decisions are based on sound and reliable evidence rather than hyperbole and scaremongering. Many new technologies still contain emerging legal and regulatory frameworks, so a measured response from those in power is key.

Opening Up Innovation

The report highlights the growing importance of open innovation, with many new advances now emerging from previously unexpected places. Whilst this can result in threats emanating from the edges of society, it can also result in growing opportunities to harness the crowd for good.

“There are strong opportunities for innovation if we can harness the scientific and industrial capabilities required to take advantage of the technologies and innovation and to develop them to market,” the report says. “The government has a core role as a facilitator of collaboration between industry and researchers, helping large and small businesses to work together and identifying common goals and strategies across sectors to leverage the UK’s advantages in technological innovation.”

This trend continues in the shift in power over technology that has seen government influence over scientific and technological advances erode as they become more widely available. Indeed, the pace of change is now such that state actors are often struggling to keep pace, either in terms of exploiting new opportunities or plugging any vulnerabilities that they present.

It’s noticeable that science and technology are increasingly borderless, with many the result of collaborations that span national boundaries. The principles of open innovation make expertise the focal point, with location increasingly unimportant. It’s crucial, therefore, that governments are able to construct partnerships, both locally and internationally. As this more open approach to innovation is adopted, however, it will require a higher degree of transparency over innovation activities than perhaps governments are used to.

“This means a level of transparency over what governments are doing and why, and how people benefit from the investment in technology while noting the need for secrecy in some areas to prevent adversaries from using the same technologies against our interests,” the report says.

Adaptability

Whilst technologies of the past would have given governments a distinct advantage due to their significant budget advantages, the technologies of the modern age are more dispersed and widely available.

This philosophical shift requires governments to quickly get used to operating in a faster and less certain environment where threats can come from a range of unexpected places that are often outside of traditional state control. It mandates a degree of agility at spotting and responding to threats, all whilst ensuring that legal and ethical frameworks are adhered to.

“This means becoming better at spotting possible security threats and opportunities, and being more agile in responding quickly to them, while bearing in mind the need for proper consideration, safeguards, and the appropriate legal and ethical frameworks,” the report explains.

As these threats are increasingly digital in nature, the ability to collect, store, analyze, visualize, and exploit data will be of crucial importance. Alongside this capability, however, the government must ensure that ethical and privacy concerns are considered and the appropriate safeguards are in place to ensure that abuses of power do not occur. This shift to a digital battleground requires significant investments in infrastructure and talent, as well as good partnerships with those in the industry who may have access to the data required to ensure security is upheld.

The report has many similarities to those produced for other sectors, in that it underlines the rapid pace of change, the emergence of new actors, and the importance of collaboration building to ensure that organizations can respond swiftly and successfully. The challenge for governments is that these are things that it has traditionally done quite badly, but with many enemies embodying the small and nimble startups that thrive in such an environment, it’s a mindset that it will rapidly need to adopt.

As such, I found the report interesting in that it focused as much on this need for a fresh mindset as it did on hard technologies themselves. Whether you are a policymaker, defense industry executive, or simply someone interested in change, it makes an interesting read!

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Topics:
security ,trends ,technology ,innovation ,privacy ,issues ,ai

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