Why should we ‘disrupt the norm’?

Traditional security protocols in our world of online chatting, banking, social platforms, insurance and investment or identification are built around pre-fed security codes or end-to-end encryption. This broadly translates to device-to-device encryption or passwords (dynamic or saved) and OTPs. They do provide a fair share of security but do not ensure that the sender is the person who was supposed to initiate the message or the receiver being the person the message was intended for. A case in point is cloning of devices, SIM cards and credit or debit cards; these are increasingly becoming commonplace.

Consider a realistic situation where a fraudster enters your system by hacking the server or your device. This allows the hacker to gain access to sensitive information stored in the server or your device or both. This would include among others, your personal pictures, videos, documents, and probably the digital key that contains all your access codes. And thus begins the nightmare. Such virtual trespassing can have grave repercussions and it is made possible because the security of your data and device is dependent on a digital key that is already stored in the digital realm. Your passwords, digital signatures, OTPs will all come to naught, and the damage might even be irreparable.

Now, imagine the magnitude of the breach when today, globally, more than 5.19 billion people are using mobile phones.

Adding to that, it is estimated that internet users around the world have grown to 4.54 billion. This is an increase of 7 percent or additional 298 million new users in comparison to January 2019.

Out of which, there would be 3.80 billion social media users by January 2020, which would be an increase of 9 percent. This would translate to nearly 321 million new users in the year gone by!

With this growing trend, on an average an internet user now spends 6 hours and 43 minutes online each day. Many of them currently spend more than 40 percent of their waking lives on the internet.

By this estimate, the world’s internet users will spend a cumulative 1.25 billion years online in 2020, with more than one-third of that time being spent in using social media. In other words,you will probably spend more than 100 days online this year. Validating the trend, Global Web Index finds that the mobile’s share of internet time has grown to 50.1 percent.

And rapid progress in digital technologies has taken the mobile usage beyond the mere acts of calling and messaging. Multiple financial transactions and storing to sharing of intimate happenings of our lives on social media are easily accomplished through readily available smart phones.

The concern that needs addressing is to how with all the existing digital security we can ensure the privacy of our online activity. Because privacy is neither about strong encryption or who has the key, it is about does the right person have the KEY. And that depends on how secure are we from online theft of identity and fraud.

Source: 1- We are Social Jan 2020 report by Hootsuite

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