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#RSAC: Our Tech Advances Must be Trustworthy & Embrace Risk

Speaking in the opening keynote session at RSA Conference 2019 in San Francisco, Rohit Ghai, president of RSA Security, and Niloofar Razi Howe, cybersecurity strategist, reflected on an inflection point of the digital revolution and its impact on trust online.

In an imaginative presentation, Ghai and Howe simulated a bio-digital era in 2049 to explore how trust must evolve for the betterment of society.

Ghai said: “The key to winning in the bio-digital era is trust. Our technology must be trustworthy, and we must be as well.” The notion of risk must therefore be properly defined in a modern, digital context.

Howe added: “Trust is to the economy what water is to life,” and a key element of maintaining trust online is understanding and managing risk, and not eliminating it. “Owning and reporting on risk has become our new normal: risk is now a good four-letter word,” she said. “Managing risk is about unleashing opportunity and not just avoiding danger. Managing risk is about enabling the rapid adoption of innovation in a manner that is good for humanity.”

What we protect is “not just applications, or data, or critical infrastructure – we are in the business of protecting trust,” said Ghai. “Trust in the organizations and institutions that we cherish, and trust in digital technologies.”

Trustworthiness is based on reputation, Ghai concluded, and “we urge you to learn from each other to protect the reputations and institutions that we serve.”

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