The business of information in GCC

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By Tim Ayling, Global Head of Fraud Prevention Solutions, Kaspersky Lab

editor's pickTuesday 25, December 2018

The relentless march of technology innovation shows no sign of halting. Recent history points to a future of technology, with the continued proliferation of social media, internet of Things, and artificial intelligence all threatening to change our landscape for good, and the winners in this new landscape will understand and prepare for the implications of this technology.

The massive increase in cybercrime and fraud over the years has highlighted the challenges businesses face across all industries. The rise of information technology in the early 1990’s promised massive efficiency savings and competitive advantages that we had not seen before. In reality, organisations of all shapes and sizes invested heavily in technology and waited for the benefits. Undoubtedly this investment did provide efficiencies that are rightly celebrated.

Those that did not invest in technology often died, with widely quoted failures including Blockbuster not buying Netflix when they had the chance, and ToysRUs outsourcing their internet sales to Amazon—ensuring the consumer became used to purchasing toys online. However, while efficiencies were created, competitive advantages often did not materialise. Why is that? Well, it’s because organisations ignored the fact that Information Technology wasn’t just about Technology—in other words, they forgot the I in IT.

In recent years we have seen the rise of the information age, where giants of the industry are information based, rather than relying on technology. You’re probably thinking of Google and Facebook as good examples of this, and you would be right. However, there are other examples that are not instantly recognised. Amazon house huge amounts of data on customer preferences, Uber know all about your movements, Airbnb know your favourite type of holiday and what you will typically spend.

Hence, people now see information as the new oil. Financial entities have also capitalised on this concept. Today online banking has become a norm, according to our Consumer Security Risks Survey 2017, 76 per cent of UAE residents regularly bank online. Consumers seem very happy to share personal information online for the convenience of being able to pay bills, transfer money and conduct other financial transactions online.

This surge in online transactions bring along many online dangers with it, new Kaspersky Lab research shows that banking Trojans are actively targeting online users of popular consumer brands, stealing credentials and other information through these sites. Kaspersky Lab technologies detected 9.2 million attempted attacks by the end of Q3 of this year, compared to 11.2 million for the whole of 2017.

This abundance of data online is definitely not going to decrease, as internet of Things is becoming the norm, with Gartner predicting 95 per cent of manufactured goods will be connected to the internet by the end of 2020. Of course, security will not be part of the design for the majority of these goods as the rush to release new products tends to trump security. Compromising on cybersecurity will not only result in monetary losses but can also damage brands reputation and affect consumer loyalty. Companies with a strong cybersecurity strategy

TAGS : cybercrime

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