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Cyber security and privacy provide (digital) trust

We live in times where trust is not a given. Thinking about the current geopolitical situation and societal unrest, we can only conclude that trust in general is under pressure. For trust to be effective, you will need two parties to enter into a relationship. That applies not only to individuals, but also to nation states, or to civil society versus government. Even in the country perceived to be the leader of democracy, the US, it is clear that distrust is a daily concern. Their divine motto “In God we trust” might be a last resort. In Europe, we are not much better off with an “old-fashioned” war on our continent. Not only has our relationship with Russia, as the aggressor in this conflict, severely  deteriorated, trust in the relationship with China is also crumbling, with a direct effect on the use and export of digital solutions such as “our” Dutch lithography tools. The fact that the use of TikTok is being banned from civil servant’s devices, is less of a downside … Using commercial “social” apps for espionage is part of a wider development in which digital solutions are utilized in “cyber warfare”. The question is how societies should respond to it.

Maintaining a proper level of trust is definitely not only a public or governmental concern. Just remember the recent failure of Google’s chatbot Bard, when incorrect output led to a heavy decline of trust and subsequently resulted in a drop in market value of $100 billion in a single day. Let’s hope, for Google’s sake, this Bard will sing a better song next time.

Trust, or the lack of it, is certainly not solely a risk-oriented issue, as it is becoming more and more a business enabler for organizations in all sectors. In this edition of Compact, we bring you insights in how trust in Cyber and Privacy can be impacted or – with positive framing – can be leveraged as an opportunity. In that sense, I would also like to invite you to read the WEF report on digital trust that my colleagues contributed to, which is introduced in this Compact.

In this edition of Compact, we bring you a wealth of articles that touch upon the concept of digital trust from various dimensions. Trust that:

  • our personal data is handled with care and based on ethics, and if not, that supervisory authorities act and enforce;
  • algorithms in use in our society are transparent and oversight is in place;
  • home automation, including robot vacuum cleaners and electricity grids that we use to connect our solar panels to, are secure;
  • information via media and news channels is reliable;
  • cyber security of new technological developments, such as cloud and quantum computing, is addressed.

Well, if there is one thing you can trust, it is the fact that Compact magazine will continue to bring you relevant insights on the development, application, management, security and the efficient and effective use of IT and data.

Did you know you can browse published Compact articles all the way back to almost 50 years ago? This is a huge online source of information. At the same time, I realize this means we are reaching an amazing milestone: this year we will start celebrating the 50th birthday of Compact. I don’t think there are many such magazines with a heritage this long.

I trust you will enjoy reading this edition of Compact!