The topic of cyber security is not purely technological. In fact, it goes to the core of free world principles – privacy, property, contract, freedom of speech! Thus, touching on and reviewing this topic as part of the Global Gold blog appears timely and important. Therefore, we are grateful to be able to share this piece written as part of the Librarium Associates Ltd. and their Focus Series (by their Managing Partner, Mr. Sune H. Sorensen).
A Big Picture Overview of Our Digital Reality
A look at the powerful trends at play representing both enormous opportunities and risks:
Digitization is underpinning much of the world today – we live in digital times. It’s a powerful economic and societal force shaping how we do business, consume, get information, learn, and communicate. It reaches every aspect of most of our lives, from the casual to how we account for ownership and how business is done on a global scale.
It has no doubt improved lives and futures around the world. Digitization is fueling world economic growth and providing a framework for how to rationalize how many things are done, improving on old business models and facilitating completely new ones.
The Numbers Are Staggering
In 2010, Eric Schmidt of Google stated; “Every two days now we create as much information as we did from the dawn of civilization up until 2003.” Combining Schmidt’s estimates with the rate of data growth from 2010 to 2015, ARK Invest analysts estimate that those two days have shrunk to a matter of hours. Microsoft estimates that by 2020, online data volumes will be 50 times greater than they were in 2016.
Intel estimates that the number of smart devices that communicate wirelessly will expand from 2 billion in 2006 to a projected 200 billion by 2020. As of June 2017, 51% of the world’s population had internet access. Cybersecurity Ventures estimates that number will be 90% by 2030.
According to studies by Ocean Tomo, a global corporate risk management consultant and merchant bank, the market value of businesses included in the S&P 500 have gone from having 17% of their value derived from intangible assets in 1975 to having 84% of their value derived from intangible assets – such as Intellectual Property (IP), proprietary data and business systems – all of which are kept largely in digital format. According to their survey series, every industry is now part of the intangible economy. Even property-intensive sectors such as real estate and oil & gas have high levels of intangible assets. So do labor-intensive sectors such as construction and retail trade. Already business investment in intangible assets is now greater than in tangible assets, such as buildings and equipment.
Many of these crucial assets are stored and operated in the ‘cloud’ – most with the various public cloud service providers - which in 2018 had annual revenues of $260 billion in 2017, according to a study by Gartner. The same study forecasts that by 2020 that number will increase to over $400 billion.
What are the implications for our society, our individual rights, for each one of us? The complete report is provided under the link that follows.
Our friends at Librarium Associates Ltd. – a boutique investment research company focused on delivering distinctive insights on global trends to help investors make informed decisions in an ever-changing world – are at it again in their commitment to delivering unique, well-studied insight on global trends that help their partners and friends make educated decisions in today’s world.