In the third part of the blog series on the wide range of new Coworking Spaces and Shared Offices, we take a look into the future: In an interview with Jakub Samochowiec, Senior Researcher, we find out from the experts at the renowned Gottlieb Duttweiler Institute (GDI) what our working environment and the measures for protecting this environment could look like in a few years.
Work of the future or future without work? How is digitisation changing our work life?
When talking about the digitisation of work, the main question is usually about which jobs still have a future and which don't. However, we often overlook the fact that the question of how we will work in future is at least equally revelant. Digitisation is changing the way in which we organise work.
The most obvious example is the home office. While the digital infrastructure has been around for a while, the pandemic has meant that working out of the office is finally no longer a rare phenomenon.
Generally speaking, we could ask ourselves whether the office, or even the company itself, is even needed at all. According to traditional economic theory, the free market is the most efficient way to allocate resources. By this logic, the reason why companies even exist is that certain small transactions would be too costly to measure and account for individually to complete these on the market. Instead, they are paid for at a flat monthly salary. However, measuring and accounting are activities to which digitisation is perfectly suited. What we know from taxi driving, where we no longer have taxi companies but only independent drivers, could also be applied to other areas. People would therefore no longer work in companies, but on projects.
The risk is that supervisory and control functions are given to machines, which measure everything that can be measured. In this spirit, Amazon has patented an armband that measures the exact hand movements of its employees allowing them to optimise the efficiency of their hand movements. What used to be a supervisor is now a computer.
How will work change in a societal context?
As indicated in the answer before, will all our hand movements be monitored by computers and are we allowing ourselves to be dictated to by machines or does digitisation allow new freedoms in home offices, project-based work without any commitment, and possibly even a basic income if machines do a lot of the work for us?
The impact that digitisation has on our work is not determined by technology. This is something we need to negotiate as a society. How much we trust each other to handle the new freedoms is crucial. If we do not do this, it means we consider supervision to be necessary. The home office that has suddenly been imposed on us has shown that we can trust each other much more than previously thought.
Total digital - what do the security concepts 4.0 look like?
The coffee machine, the house and even the entire city - everything is smart nowadays. This sort of networking enables efficiency, innovation and makes our lives so much easier (keyword "convenience"). At the same time, we need to be aware that the word "smart" also means "hackable". The more complex and networked a system is, the more vulnerable to attack it is.
The case where private surveillance cameras were hacked on a mass basis because their passwords had stayed unchanged at "1234" shows just how wide the system limits are. An orchestrated attack on another server was organised with these captured cameras.
This clearly shows that if you want to participate in a networked 4.0 world, and benefit from the many possibilities it offers, the security concepts must also be systematically conceived. This requires anticipatory technical solutions, as well as the right attitude from everyone participating in the networked world. Because even if I don't care if my camera is hacked, this threat can be targeted towards third parties.
WLAN versus radio, software versus hardware: Which security technologies will soon belong in a museum and why?
This depends on what we want to optimise. Is it about maximum security? Then a solution including software and hardware is probably more secure. But if we want to protect the small elements of the networked ecosystem as cheaply as possible, a software solution can be sufficient. The example with the hacked video cameras shows that small barriers like changing the password from 1234 to something else can do a lot. Somewhat older technologies could be entirely sufficient for such small barriers.
"AI, take over!" - a sentence that splits our society into two camps. What is the impact of AI on the security concepts of the future?
AI will make security concepts better. At the same time, AI will also become better hackers. Attackers and defenders will learn from each other and both will become smarter. This will therefore turn into an arms race between offensive and defensive applications of AI. This poses the question of whether one side will have an advantage in the system. It is quite plausible that the attacker will have the advantage, as it only has to find one attack vector and can concentrate on that, while the defender has to keep an eye on all possibly vulnerable areas.