Cryptography is now our digital immune system which authenticates and protects data, money, as well as the health and safety of both people and their respective reputations.
During the past several years the explosion of digital connectivity—from smart phones to the vast adoption of connected consumer products comprising the Internet of Things (IoT)—has strained the most typically used methodologies of authentication as well as encryption.
Without the cryptography, correspondence, which is received or sent electronically as well as the links we click on would serve as contagious agents for viruses, attacks, threats, and data breachs.
For centuries cryptography had been launched bit by bit and without the dexterity to make important updates and changes.
Moving forward, three main elements will impact how we as a society protect our money, data, and reputations, on which all practical commercial success depends.
Firstly, we should not expect a global adoption of stronger cryptographic processes and protocols.
Rather, we should expect this global trend of countries wanting their own proprietary cryptographic standards as well as protocols to only increase. Each and every enterprise must deal with this challenge individually. Businesses must make it a priority to know their particular risk exposure and the cost as well as consequences of an attack—for customers, employees, and even for partners. Compliance, regulatory issues as well as policies will become stricter for the private sector along with the fines and fees typically associated to companies with things such as GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) in the United Kingdom will force enterprises to prepare for tougher information protection.
Secondly, the aftermath of the 2015 San Bernardino attacks evinced a potential break between the United States government’s and the private sector’s approaches to cryptography. The advanced cryptographic and encryption that was used in the government sector is now required for the private sector. While the F.B.I sought to collect counter-terrorism intelligence, Apple Corp was understandably opposed to degrade the security of its devices.
United States national security relies as much on the forensics following a terrorist attack as it does on protecting encryption and thus by extension security in cyberspace in which we now all entrust our sensitive info and intellectual property. Aware of the significance of encryption to protect its own hyper-sensitive communications, the United States government should support the same strategy for the private sector.
Thirdly, and perhaps most importantly, with digital technology now connecting folks around the world in real time, we should recognize cryptography is the very essence of our immune system as a culture. Cryptography as well as its key life-cycle management are very much critical to countering the increasing number of malicious state as well as non-state actors who seek to do us harm as a nation.