Top digital agreement & cybersecurity trends for 2024

OneSpan Team,

Was 2023 the year of generative AI?

It certainly seemed that way as companies across industries and sectors explored the explosive growth of AI technologies and looked for ways to capitalize on the hype cycle, both internally for business processes and externally for customer offerings.

In addition to the exciting possibilities uncovered by the widespread adoption of AI-enabled technology, the weaponization of AI exacerbated the continued erosion of trust in the digital realm with high-profile examples of the realistic deepfakes fueling new scams and fraud attempts.

As we said last year, the biggest story of the decade is how enterprises plan for the cyber threats of today and tomorrow while restoring trust in digital processes. The answer is building security into everything a business does to future-proof as much as possible.

Now more than ever, enterprises must critically think about infusing integrity and authenticity throughout internal and external digital processes, securing processes from end to end. Safeguarding against an uncertain future will only be possible by protecting the lifeblood of business – the deal – and by investing in the long-term integrity, validity and authenticity of the very documents that allow business writ large to function.    

Continued digitization of businesses end-to-end will be a major focus throughout 2024 and digital agreements – including identity authentication, secure eSignatures and quantum-safe document storage – must be center stage. We asked our team for the top digital agreement and cybersecurity trends on their minds for this year.

Regulatory agencies are still catching up to the rapid evolution of technology and cyber threats
Frederik Mennes, Director Product Management & Business Strategy at OneSpan

With so much business now conducted online, there’s a renewed focus on protecting the transaction, forcing both companies and consumers to take a closer look at their security posture.

There will be an uptick in new industries investing in security and digitization tools in 2024. Industries that have been slower to digitize, such as the energy, mortgage, and transportation sectors, are being hit with new regulations, forcing investment in security measures like mobile and cloud authentication along with the adoption of secure eSignatures.

As new regulations are adopted, such as the Digital Operational Resilience Act (DORA) in the EU, more organizations will adopt FIDO (Fast IDentity Online) and phishing-resistant solutions in the financial sector.

Our world of connection is changing and to compete in 2024, security and digitization must be at the forefront – across all industries.

Quantum’s timeline is unclear, but digital agreements are primed for quantum encryption in 2024
Guy Harrison, Enterprise Architect at OneSpan

The National Institute of Technologies (NIST) will release the official quantum secure algorithms, starting the transition of the web to quantum-safe cryptography. This is a huge effort – every PDF reader, web server, Linux server, and essentially everything on the web needs to transition to quantum-safe private keys.

This means many organizations will need to re-encrypt important assets, which will kick-off the biggest global infrastructure conversion in terms of absolute engineering since Y2K. But unlike Y2K, we don’t know when Q Day is going to come…

The digital agreement industry is particularly motivated to adopt these new algorithms as new threats potentially put long-term artifacts at risk. For example, if you sign a long-term digital agreement or contract now, you will need it to stand up in court 10 or even 20 years from now – and Q Day will most probably occur before then.

Once the NIST-certified quantum-safe algorithms are released, we will see a fairly rapid transition to these new algorithms across industries because there is a huge amount of uncertainty as to how rapidly quantum computers will advance.

The Digital Ink Revolution will mean embracing secure eSignatures in the end-to-end business deal-making process
Sameer Hajarnis, Senior VP and GM of Digital Agreements at OneSpan

Despite the rapid digital transformation many organizations experienced during the pandemic, many still lag with regard to the adoption of digital processes, particularly around eSignatures.

While teams like procurement and finance are utilizing this technology day in and day out, broader democratization of eSignatures hasn’t happened across most industries. That will change in 2024. eSignatures will shift from a nice-to-have to a must-have, symbolizing a widespread shift toward efficiency and convenience.

Those organizations lagging behind in the adoption of digitized processes will join the ranks of progress, ensuring the digital revolution becomes an integral part of their operation.

AI is still a shiny object in some cases, but thoughtful innovation will be en vogue  
Will LaSala, Field CTO at OneSpan

In 2023, we saw generative AI (GenAI) take off and many companies jumped on implementing and using GenAI-powered technologies. Now, they are realizing the implications of this rapid adoption both internally and externally, namely with regard to trust and security.

The market will need to account for this in 2024 by creating and adopting new solutions focused on reestablishing trust within today’s digital world. We can expect to see an uptick in solutions that focus on verifying digital assets online, as well as digital agreements. With digital transactions at the core of every business, we need to prepare ourselves for an upgrade in innovation and bleed confidence into every interaction we have with customers.

Caroline Vignollet, SVP of Research & Development at OneSpan
Threats will continue to evolve, especially with AI advancements and with quantum computing on the rise. These increasingly complex challenges have highlighted the growing skills gap in the cybersecurity realm, and organizations are already feeling the ramifications. This shortage of experts is critical; we’ll see a significant surge in the demand for expanded skill sets.

To navigate the changing threat landscape and need for additional cybersecurity skills, organizations must prioritize fostering a culture of innovation in 2024. This proactive mindset not only anticipates threats but also encourages creative solutions. By investing in research, nurturing talent, and encouraging new approaches, companies can fortify their digital defenses and stay ahead of threats.

The only constant we can expect in our digital world is change – prepare yourself by future-proofing your business with technology solutions that have security built into its DNA.

Talk to us about how we can help your business.

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