2018 IT Predictions: IoT Computing, DevSecOps, Security, Data Breaches and more ...


Prediction I: Edge and IoT Computing Continues to Evolve, but Growth Hindered by 'Chicken or Egg' Syndrome.

Leon Adato, Head Geek, SolarWinds

Many industry pundits are quick to note that the concept of pushing processing to the network's fringe, i.e. the edge, has been around a long time. It's just that now we have billions of devices creating data and billions of users connecting at once. This convergence is generating a need for processing and network technology between it and the centralised system.

This leads me to wonder if edge computing will drive the growth of IoT in 2018, or will IoT be the catalyst for the edge? It's true that before immersive technologies like AR and VR are commonplace, and in advance of Al becoming pervasive, autonomous vehicle fleets becoming standard, and Netflix subscribers numbering in the hundreds of millions, edge computing must become prolific.

Clearly, technology is everywhere, so we predict that computing boundaries will be pushed even further in 2018 to meet the needs of loT's demanding applications. Edge will develop an ability to enable locally processed environment data and deliver the kind of speed that bandwidth-intensive content, like video streaming, requires. Edge must also provide the capacity to prioritise and analyse data at the source, and enable near real-time decisions, like those required for autonomous driving.

At the same time, after years of complaints from security-minded IT-Pros (not to mention a few near-miss IoTpocolypses), we may see IoT as an industry in 2018 finally prioritise security for these devices and begin building IoT systems that corporations can feel comfortable implementing. 2018 may see a proliferation in business-relevant IoT devices, aided and abetted by IoT management tools such as AWS IoT Platform.

It doesn't matter which came first, the chicken or the egg. The same can be said for the interdependent relationship of edge and IoT, because it's difficult to identify either as the primary driver for distributed computing. Does immediacy trump centralisation? Cost or flexibility? Ultimately, if you consider that many industry thought leaders compare the emergence of edge to the early days of cloud, the same is likely to be said for edge computing. We see the capabilities changing as new technologies and use cases emerge. We'll also see new technologies and use cases emerge because of edge capabilities.

Prediction 2: New Target in the Cybersecurity Wars: IT Security Researchers.

Leon Adato, Head Geek, SolarWinds

What makes malware illegal? Not the creation of it or even the sale; it's the intent to sell for criminal use. But, intent may be hard to prove (and disprove), and well-meaning security researchers may gradually find themselves the focus of investigations.

Consider WannaCry ransomware cyberhero Marcus Hutchins, aka MalwareTech. He defused the attack and tried to remain anonymous behind his moniker. However, the high-profile nature of the hack generated too much interest in his identity. In August, Hutchins was arrested in a separate incident, accused of developing malware meant to infiltrate the banking industry. He maintains his innocence, and many in the security community believe he's been falsely charged.

This is just the...

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