Data security: infrastructure lessons from Facebook

Mark bew

The Facebook/Cambridge Analytica affair has also ensured that data security has risen closer to top of mind for every single person and business using the internet

The spectacle of a besuited, awkward and somewhat “otherworldly” Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg apologising to US politician for potentially inadvertently sharing the personal data for 87 million people around the world has certainly made for compulsive viewing.

The bizarre juxtaposition of a twenty-something new-tech billionaire being questioned by a group of sixty-something old-world politicians on the ethics and legality of data harvesting, coupled with some revealing insights into the sheer scale and power of what has been created by this platform, created many an “OMG” moment.

Yet beyond the (social) media sideshow, the whole Facebook/Cambridge Analytica affair has also ensured that data security has risen closer to top of mind for every single person and business using the internet. And since that’s pretty much all of us, it’s probably a good thing.

Not least across the infrastructure sector where, as we accelerate towards a new world of efficient, digitally enabled design, construction and operation and maintenance, the issue of data security has to date, tended to have been parked in the “to do” basket. The excitement and positive opportunity created by these tools is without question a significant distraction from the potential negative downsides.

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