Jeff Weiner, LinkedIn’s former CEO, once said, “Data powers everything that we do.” And indeed, it does. The last couple of years have shown us how enterprises, large or small, are leveraging data on user interests and preferences to gather business intelligence. Emerging technologies such as connected IoT devices, Generative AI, Cloud, Web3, Metaverse, and Quantum Computing are revolutionizing our lives.
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This trend will only continue to grow, as reports suggest that over 90% of businesses are planning to enhance their spending across major mainstream digital technologies.
With the increasing amount of personal data being collected and analyzed to drive innovation, the risks associated with privacy breaches have also been manifold. This has led to growing concerns about the use of personal data, including the potential for discrimination, surveillance, and misuse of personal information. The truth is with big Data comes big responsibility.
Preparing for a cookie-less future
One of the primary concerns about technology, especially the cloud, is the potential of unauthorized access to sensitive data. Since cloud providers store data on their servers, there is a risk that hackers could gain access to that data and use it for malicious purposes. Additionally, the use of cloud services also involves the transfer of data over the internet, which could be intercepted and accessed by unauthorized third parties.
A survey by PWC reveals that for 77% of business executives, cybercrime is the biggest organisational threat, with 62% highlighting insider threat as a challenge. Additionally, one in four companies globally has suffered a data breach that cost them USD 1–20 million or more in the past three years.
When it comes to Indian business executives, the numbers are equally telling, with 43% of respondents saying their organisation is yet to fully mitigate the risks associated with remote and hybrid work.
Stakeholders, therefore, are paying close attention to a brand’s data practices and are likely to dissociate from businesses that fail to meet public expectations on data use. And now, with Google announcing the phase-out of third-party cookies, marketers will need to invest in technology to maximize their security infrastructure, build cyber resilience, and create a transparent ecosystem, to safeguard their customers data.
No conversation on emerging technologies can be complete without discussing the revolutionary role of Generative AI. This technology indeed has many exciting applications, such as creating realistic virtual environments and improving medical diagnoses. But as Generative AI becomes more sophisticated, there is a risk that it could be used to generate fake or manipulated content. There is also a danger of it perpetuating biases. For example, if an algorithm is trained on data that is biased against a particular group of people, the output generated by the algorithm may also be biased against that group. This can lead to discriminatory outcomes, such as unfair hiring in employment, that can work against certain groups of people.