Global economic slowdown and bursting or shrinking bubbles will mean that
2018’s roaring growth in much of the world will begin to slow given trade tensions, cryptocurrency value collapse, political crises, central bank activity, and
increasing debt loads.
VERSPRITE VIEW: A global economic slowdown will force prioritization, affect pricing, hiring, and expansion. As companies seek robust insight into the geopolitical risks and opportunities presented by the changing economic environment, VerSprite can design and facilitate an interactive simulation to help a company analyze a difficult decision, or provide comprehensive vendor audits as companies seek to shift to lower cost alternatives or streamline operations.
#2. Issue Spotlight
VERSPRITE VIEW: Greater focus on the geopolitical consequences of using certain hardware, firmware, and software will force companies to reevaluate enterprise tech decisions and seek alternatives to banned or compromised systems. VerSprite can provide assessments of alternative options and audit potential vendors to help companies determine the best enterprise tech solutions for their needs.
#3. Issue Spotlight
Increased data and privacy regulations will complicate business operations and raise compliance costs, while more sophisticated breaches and hacks will be larger and more damaging, as cybercriminals find ways to bypass previously strong measures like multi-factor authentication, and develop ways to fool biometric systems. Greater scrutiny of certain security protocols and their limitations will result in shifts to more invasive types of authentication. Advanced experimentation related to breakthroughs in fields such as gene editing will draw increased government attention and regulation.
VERSPRITE VIEW: To help companies better understand regulatory frameworks and compliance requirements, VerSprite provides comprehensive assessments, audits, and business continuity planning services, and can facilitate training simulations to help integrate new processes and protocols into employees’ workflows to ensure compliance with new rules.
#4. Issue Spotlight
As the first wave of prosecutions and fines related to GDPR begin in earnest, firms will need to dedicate more money and effort toward compliance and training of employees. EU authorities will likely make examples of businesses who fail to comply with the data protections, including some small businesses that believe they can avoid scrutiny.
VERSPRITE VIEW: As companies face a landscape of increasing call for regulation, and plans in several countries to introduce legislation modeled on GDPR, VerSprite can prepare assessments detailing how pending legislation can affect company operations and what steps would be necessary to ensure compliance.
#5. Issue Spotlight
Trade wars, new trade agreements, and increased weaponization of economic interdependence to reward allies and punish adversaries will create complications for companies that have cross border operations in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.
VERSPRITE VIEW: Tensions between the US and China will continue even if trade negotiations reach a positive outcome in late March and US companies with IP that China wants will face increased cyberattacks and attempts to steal that IP. As the only cybersecurity company with a geopolitical risk practice, VerSprite can provide companies with services to better understand their geopolitical exposure and take steps to ramp up cybersecurity measures.
#6. Issue Spotlight
The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) will suffer from delays, incomplete projects, and reevaluations of agreements in response to protests about unfair deal terms, lack of promised new jobs for locals, continued importation of Chinese laborers, and unacceptable levels of debt.
VERSPRITE VIEW: As China faces greater backlash and delays in BRI projects, there are opportunities for companies from other countries to take advantage of gaps to step in and provide services under better terms. To better inform decision-makers considering such steps, VerSprite provides robust market entry assessments and cyber-geopolitical risk exposure assessments.
#7. Issue Spotlight
Attempts to use blockchain to secure supply chains and cut down on waste/fraud are likely to fail to address root causes of these issues. Uneven application of blockchain technologies for industries in which the distributed ledgers are poorly matched to the factors driving waste and fraud are instead likely to exacerbate those problems.
VERSPRITE VIEW: Through supply chain security assessments, VerSprite can provide decision-makers with insight to help understand whether blockchain and other developments would help mitigate threats to supply chain security, and help companies understand geopolitical threats to their supply chains.
#8. Issue Spotlight
VERSPRITE VIEW: VerSprite’s Virtual Geopolitical Risk Officer service, in tandem with a suite of remediation services, can help companies integrate ongoing monitoring to help quickly identify breaches or more effectively recover from such attacks. Firms who operate or depend heavily upon sensitive infrastructure need risk identification and mitigation to be conducted not on a compliance-driven basis but continuously, with simultaneous attention properly placed on internal cybersecurity defenses and the external geopolitical threat landscape.
#9. Issue Spotlight
More frequent and more damaging natural disasters, as well as the consequences of climate change in places that have limited food and water stores will continue throughout 2019. Delayed rebuilding of areas devastated in hurricanes in 2017 show the extent to which even advanced countries struggle with the cost and resources needed to rebuild, resulting in uneven progress. As countries try to address climate change, and shift away from traditional sources of power, like coal, there will be opportunities to invest in modern and more sustainable infrastructure projects.
VERSPRITE VIEW: As companies work to mitigate the effects of climate change on their operations and supply chains, or take advantage of new opportunities presented by new shipping routes and technological advancements, VerSprite simulations can offer companies a way to explore these decisions via interactive tabletop exercises that include insight from all teams within the organization, and contend with the possible consequences of various decisions.
#10. Issue Spotlight
Moral hazard (aggressive risk-taking given limited consequences for the risk taker) will continue to be a major driver of crises in 2019. But even as some are incentivized to take risks while protected from the ramifications of failure, others will be incentivized to demand accountability as the #MeToo campaign evolves, and initial measures taken to address or head off #MeToo allegations will themselves cause problems.
VERSPRITE VIEW: VerSprite provides in-depth due diligence assessments to help companies assess potential new hires, acquisitions, and partners to uncover any potential problems that could yield reputational or legal issues.
As companies face a landscape of increasing call for regulation, and plans in several countries to introduce legislation modeled on GDPR, VerSprite can prepare assessments detailing how pending legislation can affect company operations and what steps would be necessary to ensure compliance.