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Technology trends for 2022 as Covid-19 pandemic forces businesses to embrace change

File picture: Pexels

File picture: Pexels

Published Jan 30, 2022

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Johannesburg - Tech experts agree that worldwide there is a shortage of cyber security professionals.

Johannesburg - Pressure from the global Covid-19 pandemic has forced businesses to embrace bold changes. Currently, digital transformation has a big impact on organisations and it’s predicted the digital transformation market will grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 19.1%.

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Business Analyst at LAWtrust, Riaan de Villiers, said growing inclination to digital transformation technologies could also mean a rise in cyber security concerns. He warns that businesses should adapt to these emerging technological trends while taking safety measures.

“Data is the backbone of digital transformation. As organisations manage larger and larger sets of data, the chances of security breaches and losses increase. However, it is expected that the adoption of digital transformation will continue as the benefits outweigh the risks associated with digital transformation,” said De Villiers.

Research conducted by the Finances Online Reviews for Business Research Centre, shows that 27% of the companies surveyed felt that implementing digital transformation initiatives is a matter of survival in their respective industries. But it’s not just companies which are at risk, with thousands of private citizens falling victims to cybercrime almost daily.

According to a report by accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, South Africa is the third biggest target in the world. Cybercrime costs the country R2.2 billion annually. De Villiers urged people to use strong passwords for each system you have to log into and never to reuse passwords on other systems.

“The danger is that if one system gets compromised, the other systems get compromised. Also, ensure that all your software is up to date. This helps to protect you against known vulnerabilities. Be suspicious of emails asking you to click on links or download attachments. Phishing emails are one of the most significant attack vectors on the internet,” he said.

Tech experts agree that worldwide there is a shortage of cyber security professionals and that many IT and cyber security teams are understaffed and struggle to cope with their workload, especially during the pandemic where many employees started working from home.

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“AI (Artificial Intelligence) can handle most manual jobs that keep teams busy and free up the team to work on other essential items. Machines can work faster and more accurately than humans, but they can only do what they were configured to do. You will always need humans to keep an eye on the machines and make decisions when there are exceptions that computers cannot handle,” he said.

On the question of whether machines will ever fully replace humans, De Villiers said: “When they installed the first escalator on the London underground in 1911, people were too scared to use it. They had to hire a person to ride the escalator the whole day to convince people to start using it. We should embrace our new digital economy; it has the potential to open new opportunities and accelerate growth for developing economies.

Here are four emerging tech trends businesses should watch for in 2022

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Cyber security

Cybercrime is becoming increasingly prevalent. As a result, more firms are at risk; therefore, businesses should confront cybercrime and make significant investments in protecting their networks and data. With this emerging tech trend, companies may protect themselves from substantial financial and reputational damages today and in the future.

Digital Signing

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Digital signatures help companies work more efficiently while cutting operational costs. Experts predict that in this age of remote working, digital signatures are likely to be implemented in more workflows during 2022. Artificial intelligence is becoming a critical part of many organisations’ operations, increasing the demand for expertise. Many organisations, however, will benefit from its adoption because it lowers operational costs and improves efficiency. Furthermore, AI’s predictive powers will make it a useful ally in the fight against cybercrime during the coming year.

Internet of Things (IoT)

IoT is another developing trend that businesses should watch. With so many companies adjusting to working remotely, having internet connectivity is becoming increasingly important. It could improve customer service. As the number of devices connected to corporate networks grows, the need to carefully manage identities will grow.

Trust and identities

Cyber security is an important issue, and top management is becoming more sensitive to the fact that cybercrime is rising. Mitigating risk must be a top priority for board members. To protect organisations, innovative new approaches to identity management such as the zero-trust model and identity first will probably gain a lot of attention during 2022.

The Saturday Star

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