What Does 2017 Hold for the Digital Economy?

Tommy Petrogiannis, January 3, 2017
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2016 has been a good year for the digital economy. We have seen remarkable growth in the visible impact of digital technologies on the way we live and work, however there is still a way to go on the journey toward digital transformation. As we look forward to the New Year, we have put together a few thoughts on what 2017 might bring.

Achieving digital transformation means being ‘Glocal’

At its heart, digital transformation is about taking offline, manual or paper-based processes, making them digital and having the ability to scale them across not just an organization but also any place an organization does business. This ability to scale globally while keeping a local lens is especially important when it comes to regulatory compliance and data privacy. As companies move transactions online and begin to service global markets, regional regulations (e.g. eIDAS) and laws (e.g. data privacy) remain in play. Doing business digitally also enables 24/7 transacting, which makes it more important than ever that mission-critical systems are backed up within and across multiple regions and readily available in case of crisis, especially in light of increasing data breaches, global weather incidents and DDoS attacks like last October’s that took down a number of popular websites. [promotion id="18202"]

Security will play a pivotal role in digital transformation

With recent data breaches and hacking incidents like October’s DDoS attack, organizations are becoming more aware of where their weaknesses lie, namely around security. Organizations need to consider the security around each process or transaction they are taking digital. While digital transformation can seem overwhelming, especially with regard to securing digital transformation initiatives, an easy place to start with is with data protection, integrity and availability. The next big frontier for security will be cloud app and software providers needing to work harder to ensure the availability of their service.

Starting small to go big is key to digital transformation

Digital transformation implies that an organization needs to undertake a massive project, which can be intimidating and a potential roadblock to starting the digital transformation process. However, it doesn’t have to be so complicated – digital transformation can be as simple as digitizing one process or transaction across one line of business. The best thing businesses can do is choose technology for digital transformation initiatives that can be built as enterprise solutions and reused across all lines of business and processes, essentially a "build once, deploy anywhere" model. This simplified approach allows businesses to take on digital transformation at a pace that works for them.

Security in the digital world will be based on the ‘digital trust chain’

October’s DDoS attack highlighted how fragile digital transacting can be, with security often added after a hack or breach rather than upfront. As a result, we are going to see a shift in how digital transformation is conceptualized to become rooted in transaction security. In future, the concept of a digital trust chain that links technologies together to provide a secure transaction from end-to-end will be at the heart of digital transformation.