The cybersecurity and data privacy landscape raised new and challenging questions for businesses and governments around the world in 2017. We are poised to see new waves of technological disruption and legal complexity in 2018.

Technological developments that provide vast benefits will pose significant cybersecurity challenges and raise new data privacy questions. The Internet of Things (“IoT”), cloud computing, autonomous vehicles, artificial intelligence, big data and blockchain technologies are but a few of the technologies that businesses are incorporating into their operations and/or products. As these technologies emerge, grow and become more complex, so do cyber threats and data privacy challenges. Threat actors are evolving to take advantage of expanding attack surfaces, develop cybercrime as a service (with fees often paid in anonymous cryptocurrencies), and deliver new strains of ransomware and increasingly destructive attacks. Meanwhile, international regulatory regimes governing data protection are only becoming more complex.

Against this background, key cybersecurity and data privacy issues for multinational companies in 2018 will include:

  • Ongoing regulatory scrutiny of cybersecurity and data privacy;
  • Vendor management as a key part of cybersecurity governance;
  • Expanded cybersecurity and data privacy litigation, including in the IoT;
  • Dynamic evolution of cybersecurity and data privacy policy; and
  • Implementation and expansion of international frameworks.
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