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2020 vision: our Internet predictions, from InternetNZ

Techblog Staff. 15 January 2020, 6:49 am

InternetNZ looks to the year ahead and comes up with some predictions. Re-posted with kind permission.

It gets harder and harder each year to make predictions about the Internet in New Zealand as technology changes become faster and faster. Last year our Engagement Director Andrew Cushen scored 1.5 out of 4 with his 2019 predictions

This year we've pulled together thoughts from across the organisation about Internet security, policy, and domain names. And of course, it's an election year. So there's bound to be interesting implications.

David Morrison, Commercial Director

2020 will be a year where the Government actively considers its role in Digital Identity in New Zealand. The policy foundations will be laid (in the public and private sector) for interoperable identity solutions that support a wide range of use cases treating identity as taonga. Citizens will have an increasing array of identity solutions to choose from that place their needs and data at the core. More solutions will appear that allow individuals to control what data they share. This will all need to be balanced with a focus on digital inclusion to ensure that anyone can engage online with their digital identity with confidence.

Sam Sargeant, Chief Security Officer 

Expect to see more high-profile security breaches across the private sector and government. It's hard to keep up with the rapid pace of modern security threats, and many have only recently turned their attention to information security. Organisations have been learning the hard way exactly how impactful a breach can be if they don't invest and drive security outcomes. Watch out for more major breaches being reported in 2020, as security challenges continue and as new privacy laws require organisations to report serious breaches.

Brent Carey, Domain Name Commissioner

The domain name system (DNS) will continue in 2020 to be open to attack and misuse. Expect this to ramp up in 2020. 

Fake news is yesterday's news. In 2020, it will all be about how the DNS is a vehicle to spread nasty news and fear-based messaging. Think hackers, hijackers, and attackers messing with registrants' personal information and credentials to change their DNS records.

Oh, and it's an election year so we best be alert to any suspicious election-related stuff in the DNS.

Ellen Strickland, Chief Advisor - International

Social media and digital regulation will continue to grow as a global, political football in 2020. We will see serious changes and disagreements between countries about taxing international digital service companies. Content wise, platforms will continue to tinker around the edges and there will be a growing number of attempts at national legislation. Lastly, how to handle 'big tech' will be a hot US election issue, as well as feature in international fora including the UN, with a resolution on Cybercrime progressing.

Kim Connolly-Stone, Policy Director

The election campaign will feature some big Internet issues, including public accusations of hacking or manipulated online media leveled at a political campaign. Though most New Zealanders can now get fibre, we might see the raising of concerns about the alleged health impacts of 5G, or about rural or older New Zealanders missing out on the Internet if copper gets turned off in areas where fibre is available. We will see a big push to prioritise digital inclusion, so all New Zealanders can make meaningful use of the fantastic fibre network we have. We will also see some ambitious ideas about social media regulation as part of party platforms during the election. 

Andrew Cushen, Engagement Director

New Zealand's Internet infrastructure will get even better, and for more New Zealanders. The mobile telcos will announce even more coverage, sites and rollout of 5G tech; Chorus will launch its 10 Gigabit products, as will the other Fibre companies. 

I think we might be surprised by ownership changes as the market landscape changes for telco investment. Now that the first phase of fibre investment is done, and 5G rollout requires deep pockets, I think there'll be new conversations about what and how we keep building and maintaining this world class infrastructure. Throw on top of that a new Telecommunications Commissioner at the Commerce Commission and what that may mean for investment and competition rules, and 2020 could be quite a big year in terms of who is building what.


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