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How the Pandemic Brought Permanent Changes to Education

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Deanna Ritchie


The disruptive effects of the pandemic have been well-publicized. Unfortunately, disruption took place across every setting, not just in supply chains and consumer buying habits. In fact, Covid has had a widespread effect in terms of bringing significant changes to education.

Many experts believe these changes to education are here to stay. However, these changes don’t spell doom and gloom for K-12 schools, trade schools, and higher education institutions.

Quite the contrary. Education hasn’t undergone sudden, evolutionary growth for several decades. Changes in education might, in fact, be a bit overdue. Yes, some aspects of education have improved due to new technologies. And yet, the basic model of learning hasn’t seen seismic movement — until now.

After more than a year of teachers, administrators, and students scrambling to exchange knowledge innovatively — and remotely — a different education path forward has emerged. Listed below are a few of the most important upheavals helping to reinvent both private and public school systems.

Grades are becoming less important than practical assessments.

The GPA hasn’t completely gone the way of the dinosaur. Nonetheless, many people still see GPA as an accurate measurement of learning. But, as noted in research conducted by Instructure, the manufacturer behind Canvas, fewer than a third of educators felt tests reflected knowledge gains. Instead, 76% of them preferred to use formative assessments to gauge progress.

This move away from seeing pupils as “A-students” or “failures” receives excellent marks from many researchers. When handled correctly, formative assessments can remove the “high-stakes” grading that causes so much anxiety among many students. Formative assessments can also be used in tandem with more traditional testing vehicles when appropriate.

College courses are aligning with career trends.

For a long time, many have argued that colleges and universities need to future-proof their curricula by offering more relevant courses, certifications, and degrees. Finally, Post-pandemic, this is starting to happen more frequently on campuses around the country.

Case in point? Interactive gaming.

According to Randy Pitchford, the president of Gearbox Entertainment, the interactive entertainment industry is finally being taken seriously as a career path. When Pitchford started making interactive video games years ago, he admits that he had to learn on his own. At the time, the higher education field didn’t see the video gaming industry as relevant.

Today, Pitchford’s happy to see that everything’s changed for up-and-coming talented programmers and creatives. As he explained to college students interested in entertainment occupations, “Now, there are entire university programs dedicated to this craft, which means the next crop of entertainers will be more equipped than ever to develop and design amazing games.”

Hybrid learning is enjoying its moment.

Though Zoom fatigue became a real issue during the pandemic, not all students saw online learning as a negative. For many, being able to attend classes online kept them safe while giving access to essential information. Additionally, online learners had a greater choice of schools regarding where they wanted to learn. This was especially true for post-secondary coursework, degrees, and certifications.

Even as many K-12 and higher education schools have returned to in-person learning, they’ve remained open to online learning and embraced a hybrid approach.

For example, many teachers now record classes so absent students can watch them later. Some offer live-streaming capabilities to students who can’t be in the classroom. Keep in mind that many schools upgraded their technologies during Covid to include web cameras in learning spaces. Consequently, they’re eager to continue using those technologies and get the highest return from those investments.

Colleges and universities are moving toward making test-optional applications the norm.

For decades, students had to take standardized tests such as the SAT and ACT to apply to colleges. Then SAT and ACT canceled testing as the pandemic swept the country. No testing meant that countless high school seniors were left without a critical evaluation piece. In response, higher education institutions — including some in the Ivy Leaguewent test-optional.

The decision to look at college applicants through a different lens was a natural reaction to a problem. As it turns out, it drove popularity and press for colleges. As a result, many institutions have made themselves test-optional for the foreseeable future.

Parents are more engaged than before in their children’s education.

When kids began learning from desktops, laptops, and tablets, their parents were often by their sides. Undoubtedly, working moms and dads struggled with trying to be there for their kids during the school day. Nevertheless, they ended up becoming stronger partners in their children’s learning and development.

Research conducted by EdWeek reveals that nearly 80% of teachers felt that their communication with parents during the pandemic increased. Better communication is yet another positive outcome for education, which has long been fraught with disconnects between educators and parents. With parents taking more of a “we’re in this together” approach to their kids’ education, schools and their staff feel more supported. Additionally, it may be easier for teachers to have tough discussions about poorly performing students with understanding mothers and fathers.

Administrations are upskilling teachers in technology.

Quite a few teachers were caught off-guard when they had to move their classwork online. For one, they had to master Zoom regardless of whether they were comfortable with tech. Similarly, they owed it to their students to make better use of cloud-based and networked learning management systems. As a result, many set out on their own to acquire know-how in the ed-tech space.

It’s essential to ensure that educators aren’t caught flat-footed and without these vital skill sets again.

Hopefully, a full-scale pandemic will never take everyone by surprise again. However, something else could cause equally significant disruptions in the educational process. Disruption is one reason why schools are putting their focus into training their teams on the latest advancements. Accordingly, teachers will be better able to flex their tech muscles fast, just in case.

Covid caused several learning stumbles. At the same time, the pandemic provided the education system with a much-needed wake-up call. After all, the children, teens, and young people in school right now will be in the workforce before long. They deserve a relevant education to launch fulfilling careers. Overall, it’s a good thing that changes in education are taking place to meet their needs precisely at the right time.

Image Credit: pexels; thank you!

Deanna Ritchie

Managing Editor at ReadWrite

Deanna is the Managing Editor at ReadWrite. Previously she worked as the Editor in Chief for Startup Grind and has over 20+ years of experience in content management and content development.

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How IoT and Blockchain Will Affect Digital Humans in Metaverse

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Chirag Leuva


Prologue

The process of progressing further has taken a steep ascent as there is numerous technology at our disposal. These technologies have helped us make countless contributions. Moreover, these advancements are the foundation for several more innovations yet to be discovered by the industry.

The statistics also support the future accession of emerging technologies. The rate of growth of 104% can be seen by the year 2023, according to Statista. IoT and Blockchain Technology are the two leading advanced technologies that will help these advancements.

Although there is another technology that tech-enthusiasts are trying to incorporate with these two. We can say collectively they will be known as ‘The Big Three.’ In early October, Facebook changed its company logo and gave itself a new fresh face with the name ‘Meta.’ They also aim to develop further the Metaverse, which has given a ray of light to the subject.

Crucial Aspects of Metaverse, IoT, and Blockchain

Here we will discuss the crucial aspects of Metaverse and consider the significant importance of Blockchain and IoT for developing Metaverse in great detail. Moreover, we will discover Blockchain Technology’s and IoT’s benefits in developing Metaverse as a secure, stable, and reliable platform. A platform for industries looking to introduce practical characteristics into their business practices.

Understanding Blockchain and IoT Technology

1. Blockchain Technology

Imagine you need to share your digital asset on an online platform. But you are afraid it might be stolen while you send the assets. Nobody wants to be tormented by the repercussions, as people always aim for benefits. Blockchain Technology plays a vital role in securing those assets for you. It will monitor and provide security through a simple attribute called a distributed ledger.

The benefit of blockchain technology can be observed in its method of storing and transferring data in blocks chained to the previous digitized information. Initially, Blockchain was a concept established to secure crypto trading, but soon, Blockchain development companies started to recognize the potential of scaling the technology to a greater extent.

Statistics

  • Experts believe Blockchain Technology is making tremendous progress in manufacturing industries with a rate of 73% stated by findstack.
  • Statista says spending on Blockchain Related solutions will reach 19 billion USD by 2024.
  • It is observed that Blockchain technology was able to enable 20% of IoT technologies in 2020.

The practical advantages of Blockchain Technology are that it can provide transparency and agility and works as a cost-effective solution for transferring data with rapid speed and security. In addition, the owner can track the information as it works on an immutable ledger and proves the ownership as the copyright or trademark of the digital property cannot be altered.

Benefits of Blockchain Technology:

  • As the technology provides a feature for keeping the information unaltered, the reliability factor between two or more parties will be maintained.
  • Data accuracy is another advantage of the technology as all the validated transactions are recorded and monitored with high standard security.
  • The information can be shared more efficiently and eliminates the part where the administration needs to reconcile the records.

So conclusively, blockchain technology provides security, stability, and reliability to the information shared in mass volume between several functioning groups.

2. Internet of Things (IoT)

Now let’s move one step further to sharing relevant information about technical aspects of the future. IoT has enabled the practice of utilizing and transferring information in a contemporary manner. Since the involvement of IoT in numerous technology industries, we have seen the distribution of information in many capacities.

IoT has simplified connecting every general and sensory device efficiently to make everyday tasks convenient. However, the true potential of IoT is yet to be realized. Also, a blockchain can adequately make IoT superior in multiple ways.

Statistics

  • Introducing IoT has improved efficiency and productivity significantly, says 83% of organizations globally.
  • By 2030 the number of active devices functioning on IoT will surpass the stated number, i.e., 24.5 billion.
  • According to Statista, the accumulated worldwide spending on IoT will reach 1.1 trillion USD by the end of next year.

The term IoT is coined based on the technology’s practical application. It aims to connect every device, machine, human, and ‘Things’ essential in automating any process efficiently, eliminating inaccuracy, and saving time.

So far, it has been observed that IoT has been utilized by Tech-Giants and manufacturing companies to boost their productivity. There are many pivotal devices involved to make the system and procedure faster. Devices like actuators and sensors are the primary ones. These devices have allowed experts to elevate the concept for further development.

Benefits of the Internet of Things (IoT):

  • The technology allows devices and machines to share information efficiently, increasing the net productivity of the whole process.
  • It will be able to decrease the cost of operation and maintenance. At the same time, enabling mobility and providing flexibility for the dedicated processes.
  • The most notable benefit of IoT is that it can elevate user experience and offer a spectrum of personalized services.

My purpose for explaining the importance of Blockchain and IoT for future technology points us toward the possible answer of how these two technologies can be the greatest benefactor in growth. But first, we must understand what is and why its banks on the development of these two technologies.

The Evolution of Digital Human to Metahuman

Digital Human is a design concept that leverages the tools and features of the game development engine to produce high-fidelity characters with attributes similar to real-life human beings. Every pixel of the characters is hyper realistically personalized according to one’s prerequisites. The prominent game development company that has taken an interest in the concept and has provided appropriate tools to scale the technology is Unreal Engine 5.

The designing and creation of digital humans are supposed to bring groundbreaking changes to the entertainment and media industries initially. However, sooner or later, technology will make remarkable revolutions in multiple IT segments.

They bank on basic digital human features such as being AI-powered and Machine learning. Through these two technologies, they can analyze every situation and possibly fabricate responses and solutions accordingly.

Digital humans are going to be an essential part of the Metaverse.

The concept will offer an amazingly immersive experience and add a factor of realism. Considering the opportunity, Unreal engine focused the attention of tech enthusiasts on their latest Digital Human developer tool, Meta Human Creator.

They are not planning just to increase the user experience but to elevate the idea to the degree that it can be used practically as intellectual property and digital assets. I mean, that is what we can consider them, right?

As digital assets and now you might have an idea why we started to understand Blockchain and IoT first, two of the most curricular technologies that will help increase the application effectively. Both the technology will allow it to reach its full potential as one deals with securing the digital asset and the other one helps to maintain the flow of information seemingly without sufficient accuracy.

Statistics

  • There are around 50,000+ users that have adapted the ideas of Web 3.0 virtual worlds, and experts have said they are increasing exponentially.
  • So far, the market for Digital humans has reached a size of 527.58 billion USD, says PRnewswire.
  • The revenue CAGR of Digital Human avatar for AI technology is stated at 46.4%, as mentioned by EmergenResearch.

The Possible Scope of Metaverse

Blockchain and IoT can act as catalysts in developing the possible scope of the Metaverse. To understand that possibility, we needed to know how the technology works, and we did. We also looked at a few of its benefits and how it can impact the process of operating via information.

The essential roadmap of introducing Digital Human in Metaverse is through making the transfer of data and information security as well as fast pace. These will affect both the owner and the client in multiple ways.

From the educational sector

Major industries have recognized the advantages of Digital Humans, like entertainment, IT, and industries that reap the benefits of digitalized technology. For example, the educational sector is trying to implement AI bots much brighter and more efficiently than a human expert. They utilize the digital Avatar to eliminate the sense of isolation more than 50% of students would experience while studying from home.

Entertainment industries are creating life-like characters for games, movies, and events

These digital characters bank on AR/VR technology to fully captivate their audience. Likewise, health care industries lacking staff to engage with their patients daily can effectively use their digital copies to communicate in a riveting manner.

Other industries are starting to recognize the importance of human connection and the ability to communicate with each other in a more lively way. This can be possible by making the technology more advanced and accessible with the help of Blockchain and IoT.

Benefits of IoT and Blockchain for Digital Human

Closely connecting the tiny dots, you will eventually find that the technical benefits of Blockchain and IoT will increase the chances of Digital Human being a technology. Indeed clients will have to leverage the skills and experience of Developments Companies to make it work.

  • Smart contracts will enhance the user experience for transferring data securely and validating the ownership of the digital asset, which in the Metaverse is quite essential as we engage with digital assets on a complete basis.
  • Managing digital assets with the help of Blockchain can increase the trust factor between two governing bodies. Moreover, it will make storing and transferring information on the cloud a typical process.
  • Digitalizing the real-world asset will need distributed ledgers and secure currency to offer rapid deals without altering the source and destination of the assets. For example, a spring unit containing the Avatar of a natural person will be available on the internet without worrying about significant setbacks.
  • IoT Technology will increase the range of personalization. The primary obstacle is necessary information available to enthusiasts in the area of specific amounts of technology. Imagine being able to create a life-like copy that has all the characteristics of the person you want it to be intimate with. IoT can make it possible for Digital Human.

Challenges and Possible Solutions

Let’s look at some of the challenges impacting the growth of digital human and the Metaverse.

The first and foremost challenge is providing the right tools and equipment to the creators. Also, at the same time, looking at how efficiently Metahuman by Unreal engine is advancing. It will cut off a lot of unnecessary time-consuming work for the creators.

Making the technology a learner as it needs to adapt every emotion, characteristic, technical aspect, and decision-making power of the actual human, the digital asset is intimating. Machine learning will make this possible, and IoT is a gateway to enable machine learning to perform those potentially crucial functions.

It is securing the information that the digital asset poses. Blockchain provides an innovative and secure data network that the owner can monitor effectively. It will also give a response feature that will indicate the changes done by another unwanted source.

Epilogue

The era of utilizing digital technology to its most beneficial potential is close. Blockchain, IoT, Metaverse, Metahuman as well as Machine Learning will make it possible. Indeed the process is time-consuming, but the benefits are the most crucial aspect. Moreover, they will affect the welfare of the general public.

Digital Humans can learn, grow and interact with human beings conventionally. They are helping us to become smarter and more orthodox and elevating the use of knowledge to an unprecedented extent.

IoT and Blockchain are the two leading technologies of the modern era.

But whose features and factors will eliminate the risks and possible threats leading to major disasters? Underlining the possibilities and grave importance of every interconnected technology is a crucial practice we should be aware of. It helps us improve with each passing day and make an impactful technological revolution.

Featured Image Credit: Provided by the Author; Thank you!

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Seniors Don’t Want to Retire Anymore. Here’s Why and How to Help

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Free Your Money: Strategies for Keeping Your Money In The Best Place Possible - ReadWrite


Retirement can be a dream for one and a nightmare for another. People treat retirement differently, depending on their requirements and circumstances. While some feel retirement is the time to pack up bags and travel or commit to hobbies they have long paused for, others feel retirement is not the right option.

There may be various reasons behind pushing away retirement: I need the money, I love what I am doing, I can’t imagine myself not doing anything, etc. The recent trend indicates that most seniors are reluctant to retire, and some decide to stay on course past retirement, while others choose alternative careers.

According to a survey by the American Advisors Group (AAG), 46% of seniors (60-70 years) had plans to work part-time jobs during retirement. 18% said they wish to work after passing the age, a rise of 8% from a 2019 survey. 12% of the respondents said they have no plans of stopping full-time work, an increase of 6% from 2019.

Although extending your retirement period or not wanting to retire may have their reasons justified, it may create a tricky situation for the newer generation. As a result of the baby boomers’ late retirement, the next generations may see a shortage of career growth, employment options, etc.

Why are most seniors reluctant to retire?

Some of the reasons why most seniors are reluctant to retire may include a vast number of reasons. People are in much better shape than previous generations and live longer. Some feel they will become bored at home or even doing their activities. Many still want to contribute in some way to society.

Did the pandemic change retirement plans?

Due to the pandemic, many seniors are rethinking their retirement plans. The pandemic has given many people the experience of their retirement days, and many found it boring and meaningless.

Many realized they loved their job and found meaning in what they did. To them, quitting their job to sit at home was not meant for them. Many also realized they might not have enough saved to survive such uncertainty.

Support family and maintain a standard of living.

First, the pandemic and then inflation dipped almost every bank account. Many seniors are draining their savings or depending on their paychecks to stay on track. In addition, about 50% are using up their retirement savings to support their children.

Some seniors are turning their back to retirement to support and maintain their standard of living. They believe they should continue to work to ensure that they have enough financial capacity and the freedom to spend their retirement days as they had hoped.

Debt and broken savings account.

Finances are a significant aspect for almost everybody when considering retirement. The recession has dramatically affected retirees and soon-to-be retirees, reducing their retirement accounts and property value. Most are more concerned about their medical and long-term care costs than their daily expenses.

The most current data shows that Baby Boomers and Gen Xers carry high amounts of non-mortgage debts. The credit card debt alone for Baby Boomers stands at $6,043 and $7,155 for Gen X.

On the contrary, Millennials’ credit card debt balance stands relatively low, at $ 4,322. Not considering the advantages of various financial tools, like debt consolidation, can be why seniors are comparatively behind with a higher debt balance. As a result, they need to continue working to improve their finance.

Increased life span.

Another possible reason for delayed retirement is the increased life span of Americans. A recent survey implies that the average life expectancy of Americans has risen to 78.9 years in 2020 from 39.4 in 1960.

With the rise in life expectancy, an average 60-year-old can expect to live for 15 to 20 years. Back in time, it was easy for retirees to survive with pensions or continue work till they died. However, most view 20 years as a long time to sit around doing nothing and stay using savings. Also, you need to support yourself with healthier health and an increased life span.

How seniors’ late retirement is affecting the next generations?

Although seniors may have their reasons justified with the best interests in mind, late or no retirement can bring various setbacks for the economy, companies, and especially for the next generations. Some of the setbacks are:

Difficulty moving up the career ladder.

While seniors are putting off their retirement plans, the next generation may find it difficult to climb the career ladder. Moving up to the middle and higher position can be difficult if there are no vacant positions. Various surveys show that most employees view career growth opportunities as one of the top factors in employment.

As a result, most younger workers are switching jobs hoping to seek higher positions and increased pay. Ultimately, retaining competent employees is increasingly difficult for companies, which may sometimes harm the business.

With the younger workers switching to seek higher positions and seniors not ready to quit, the next generation is trapped in the middle, without many scopes for promotions or increments.

Unable to make enough money.

The pervasiveness of senior workers in the workforce also affects the economy. With seniors blocking the path for the next generation, their scope of promotions and making more money is limited.

Result: they are not being able to support or contribute to the economy. Also, they are hardly making enough for themselves. Low savings and high debt amounts include their list of concerns. The situation raises concern for the next generation to rethink their retirement plans.

In addition, with the aging workforce, overall productivity also gets tampered since most are hesitant to adopt new technologies.

What can be done to prevent the next generation from facing the same problems?

There are possibilities for the next generation to succumb to these situations and delay or rethink their retirement days too. However, some steps can be helpful to prevent the next generation from facing the same problems.

Make saving for retirement a priority and strategize for it.

It is a common situation that people don’t often plan for retirement until they are halfway nearing their retirement period. There may be various reasons people don’t start saving for retirement earlier in their careers. Examples may include having debts, not having a fat enough paycheck, family responsibilities, etc.

However, it is necessary to understand the importance of saving for retirement before you can see it coming. When you start to save or invest for retirement while you still have a long way to go, you are allowing yourself to build a more considerable fortune for retirement over time.

Build a side cushion to let your retirement account grow.

Another common mistake people make when planning to allocate funds for their retirement is, overlooking the importance of an emergency fund. Increasing your retirement savings accounts is of little use if you have to tap into those accounts in times of dire need.

Building an emergency fund acts as a side cushion for your savings account. Ideally, a side cushion or emergency fund should be able to suffice for all your expenses for a minimum of six months.

It can be helpful to support you in times of uncertainty like the pandemic, loss of job, an accident, etc. You can confidently contribute to your retirement accounts when you have an emergency fund that can support you with expenses for six to twelve months.

You will know that you can let your cushion grow without fear of the need to break into your saving for an unfortunate event before retirement.

Look for ways to pay off debts and handle finances efficiently.

Handling your finances is as essential as having savings for retirement. Financial habits like overspending, paying off your bills late, paying bank fees like overdraft charges, taking out loans, etc., are all examples of poor financial management. When you handle your finances efficiently, you can strengthen your financial grounds with an enormous nest egg.

In addition, it is good to pay off your debts at the earliest possible time instead of paying the minimum amounts and carrying the balance over. Again, taking advantage of the financial tools available to you can be helpful in getting rid of your debts faster.

Financial instruments like balance transfer and debt consolidation are some options you can use to get debt free quickly. Ideally, you should always begin repaying the debt that carries the highest interest rate.

For example, credit card debts usually have high interest, and paying the minimum monthly amount can result in more interest in the long run. Instead, when you decide to consolidate debt, you can obtain a lower interest on the debt, and paying off the balance can become more accessible and faster.

Look for volunteering or part-time jobs to stay engaged.

While more and more seniors wish to continue working for the love of what they do, some seniors have a different reason. They choose to continue working because they want to stay engaged. With an increased life span and good health conditions, people view 20 years as too long for hobbies or to sit around doing nothing. Hence they prefer to stick to their current job for as long as possible.

Instead, it is an excellent time to volunteer for a cause or take up some part-time jobs that can allow free time while also keeping busy for some time with work.

Look for meaningful jobs like mentoring or training.

Reportedly, many seniors want to stay on the field because they love their work. In other words, they love their jobs and wish to continue working for as long as possible. Unarguably, seniors bring to the table years of experience, soft skills, and the capability to work calmly under pressure. They are treasured for the expertise and patience that the newer generations lack.

Hence they can do so meaningfully by imparting their knowledge and experience to the next generation. Creating a working environment with flexible working hours, where seniors can train or mentor their juniors, can benefit all.

Seniors can continue their job while the next generations can learn from them without feeling trapped. The company can get the best from the highly skilled multi-generational set of employees.

Bringing Changes in Working Culture

With many seniors refusing to quit, it may be time to change the work culture. It can be helpful to split C-level jobs into two. This strategy will allow the next generation to perform duties and responsibilities. It gives them a half-promotion, and they will be motivated to stay in the company.

In addition, companies may also consider shifting from the traditional corporate hierarchy to a horizontal hierarchy. This shift in hierarchical structure can motivate employees to work as team members and swap through different positions.

As a result, employees with more skills can select from various career ladders.

Final Thoughts

Seniors wanting to retire and spend the rest of their lives in tranquility is common. Some seniors are waiting to embrace their retirement days, which has been a commonly anticipated scenario for a long time.

However, nowadays, it is not unusual for seniors to delay their retirement until they enter their 70s or 80s. The Baby Boomers and some Gen Xers and Millennials have a similar perspective, and some may believe they should never retire at all.

You may hear various reasons behind this, from needing finances to flow in, loving what they do, or just needing to stay engaged through their life. An additional factor here is life expectancy.

With the advancements in medical treatment and an increased life expectancy, seniors can expect to live longer and healthier than their previous generations.

On the contrary, delayed retirement in one generation can bring unfavorable situations for the next generation. These situations can be averted by bringing in some changes. For example, seniors who wish to work because they want to be occupied or feel retirement is not the ideal place for them can take up volunteering or some part-time job.

On the other hand, seniors who want to continue working in their field because they love what they do can take up training or mentoring the newer generations. Splitting C-level jobs into two and shifting the hierarchical structure from traditional to horizontal are beneficial strategies companies can adopt to retain employees and boost productivity.

Also, it is necessary to begin preparing or saving for retirement much before you near your retirement period. Analyzing and responsibly managing your finances can help you build a stronger financial future. In addition, creating a side cushion to secure your savings and support you in times of need is vital for a promising future.

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How Artificial Intelligence Testing is Top-Notch in Cyber World

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Figures Related to Cybersecurity


In the cybersecurity sector, artificial intelligence testing is crucial. This is because AI has the potential to help cybersecurity overcome some of its major obstacles. And there are many obstacles, including the incapacity of many organizations to stay on top of the numerous new risks and attacks that emerge as the internet and technological usage increase.

AI-powered cybersecurity is expected to change how we respond to cyber attacks. Because of its capacity to study and learn from enormous volumes of data, artificial intelligence will be crucial in identifying sophisticated threats. Moreover, AI testing is an all-in-one answer to safeguard these gadgets from malicious actors, as new technology and gadgets are always available.

This blog will walk you through the difficulties that the cybersecurity sector is now facing, the significance of employing Artificial Intelligence testing to overcome those difficulties and some of the drawbacks of doing so. Finally, we shall examine some actual applications of AI in this area before we conclude.

An Overview of the Cybersecurity Industry

Cybersecurity describes the processes followed by people or organizations to safeguard their online-connected computer hardware and software against cyberattacks.

The proliferation of emerging digital technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT). The rising frequency and intricacy of cyberattacks and rigorous data protection laws for data security. An uptick in attacks that target software supply chains is the key driver of the cybersecurity market.

In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the incidence of malicious attacks on databases in large enterprises. They are necessitating tighter database protection and fostering the expansion of the cybersecurity industry. In healthcare, banking, insurance, manufacturing, and financial services, growth in adopting organization security solutions is provident.

Some Intriguing Figures Related to Cybersecurity

  • The amount of money spent on internal cybersecurity operations is anticipated to increase by 7.2% annually till 2026.
  • By December 2026, it is familiar that global spending on cybersecurity services and products will increase by 8.4%. The necessity to fix the network, app, and system vulnerabilities as a result of ongoing corporate and individual cyberattacks are elements that are likely to promote growth.

 

  • The cybersecurity industry was estimated to be worth $156.24 billion in 2020 and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 14.5 percent from 2021 to 2026, reaching $350.25 billion.
  • Information security products and services generated $144 billion in revenue in 2018, down 12.4% from 2017, according to Gartner Inc.
  • According to Gartner’s predictions, information security revenue will increase from $124 bn in 2019 to $170.4 bn in 2022. Additionally, according to their analysis, end-user expenditure on cloud security increased by 4.1 percent between 2020 and 2021.

Glaring Cybersecurity Challenges

You may be surprised to learn that human mistake accounts for 95% of cybersecurity breaches, according to a Google survey. These mistakes might include everything from downloading a virus-filled email attachment to using a weak password to access an unsafe website. According to studies, phishing attacks are among the most common cyber events, CEO fraud, stolen computers, and ransomware assaults. The effects of these attacks are stunning, even though they may seem easy to handle. In small and medium businesses (SMBs), data breaches cost, on average, $3.9 million. The top four are the top four: large-scale data monitoring, a slower turnaround, a lack of threat understanding, and organizational compliance standards.

Delving Into Common Cybersecurity Attacks

Cybercrime is always changing, with hackers constantly refining their tactics to cause the most harm, complicating the issues outlined in the previous section. Malware that could modify its source to evade detection made up 93.67% of the malware observed in 2019. Additionally, within the same year, 53% of consumer PCs and 50% of commercial computers both relapsed the infection. To eradicate this virus from its source, action and awareness are vital.

We should all be aware of the following examples of the typical cybersecurity threats that clever hackers have cleverly created.

• Phishing

When a hacker uses the social engineering technique of phishing, they send you an email that contains a dangerous link. By clicking the link, you could give them access to your computer so they can infect it with a bug and steal all of your personal data.

• Hardware and Software Attacks

If your system’s hardware and software are not updated to the most recent versions, missing critical security updates can be a risk. It can be introduced to “back doors” or “trojans” and obtain access to the system.

• Network Intrusions

Data going to and from a network endpoint can be hindered by malicious actors and decrypted. If they aren’t caught in time, they might alter it, tamper with it, or use it illegally.

• Cloud Data Breaches

Since more people are using private and public clouds, unencrypted data stored there is an open invitation to malicious hackers. Data saved in the cloud can also be composed due to unreliable interfaces or APIs, insufficient access control, and inadequate security architecture.

• Mobile Malware

Mobile devices’ internal operating systems may become unreliable due to this dangerous malware, which could reduce their functionality. This frequently occurs as a result of URLs being insecure online. In addition, downloaded applications with security flaws also contribute to mobile virus problems.

• Ransomware Attacks

One of the most common types of cyberattacks is ransomware, in which the attackers send a virus into people’s personal laptops and smartphones to access and use the data on those devices. They then want a ransom to give you access to it again.

How Can Artificial Intelligence Testing Enhance Cybersecurity?

A notable benefit of AI testing is that it significantly reduces some labor-intensive jobs known to be time-consuming, such as security monitoring, which is unquestionably a significant time-sink for IT security experts. AI testing can do this repetitious labor instead of humans having to keep an eye on numerous gadgets. To enforce proper cybersecurity, decrease attack surfaces, and detect malicious behavior, AI and machine learning testing need to be in collar.

Lifecycle-Approach-To-Continuous-Cybersecurity-Improvement

Let’s look at some additional crucial areas where AI testing proves to be of the utmost significance:

• Moving a vast amount of information around

Each day, data of over 2.5 quintillion bytes are produced. Artificial intelligence (AI) technologies can assist in automating data processing. It makes sense of vast amounts of data that would be impossible for humans to understand in a usable manner. Security experts cannot evaluate and classify every piece of information because firms face millions of risks. As a result, it is tough for security specialists to foresee dangers before they destroy IT systems. Artificial intelligence testing can identify numerous cyber-security threats and issues without human analysts.

• Behavioral analytics

By analyzing how users typically interact with their devices, ML algorithms are intelligent enough to learn and create a pattern of user behavior.

AI testing flag the user as suspicious and possibly block them if it notices unexpected behaviors that are out of the ordinary. These actions include altering the user’s typing speed or attempting to access the system at odd times.

• Ability to analyze and comprehend data

AI testing analyzes millions of events and detects a wide range of threats. These threats include malware that exploits zero-day vulnerabilities, phishing attempts, and malicious code downloads. As a result, AI and ML have emerged as essential information security technologies. Companies may better understand dangers and respond to them faster thanks to these insights. It also helps them adhere to the best security procedures.

• Detection of spam

Spam detection, as well as other types of social engineering aided by natural language processing(NLP), is a subfield of deep learning.

In general, NLP employs a variety of statistical techniques and extensively learns typical verbal and nonverbal communication patterns to identify and prevent spam content.

• Systems for detecting and preventing intrusions (ID/IP)

These systems can detect harmful network activity, guard against intrusions, and warn users of potential dangers. Systems using ID and IP frequently prove useful in addressing data breaches and improving the security of user information.

Furthermore, it is feasible to guarantee a more effective operation of ID/IP systems by utilizing deep learning, recurrent, and convolutional neural networks. The methods above will make it easier for security teams to distinguish between safe and risky network activity. In addition, it improves traffic analysis accuracy and decreases false alarm frequency.

• Speedy detection of numerous types of threats

When it comes to hacking networks, cybercriminals are becoming more skilled and quick. The use of cutting-edge technology, such as machine learning, makes it easier to detect cyberattacks. However, it is hard for humans to keep track of every connected system for every possible hazard. These data are used to educate AI-powered devices, which can then learn from real and digital world data.

Wrapping Up: AI Testing Potential in Cybersecurity

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Given the rising interest in AI in cybersecurity, it’s realistic to assume that in the future, we’ll see even more sophisticated solutions capable of resolving difficulties in the business that is even more difficult and complex. By automating threat detection, artificial intelligence testing will strive to save cybersecurity and contribute to internet safety.

IT security professionals now utilize AI to reinforce sound cybersecurity procedures. It reduces the attack surface and tracks malicious activity. In addition, it evaluates and deals with massive volumes of data and assesses human behavior.

This is by no means a comprehensive list of its functions. It’s preferable to embrace technology today and keep up with the times if you want to be more prepared for the AI-testing cybersecurity future.

Featured Image Credit: Provided by the Author; Thank you!

Timothy Joseph

Timothy Joseph

Technical Writer At QASource

I am Timothy Joseph, a testing expert with over 10 years of experience in QASource. In a nutshell, a techie who enjoys studying the pinnacles of current technology & creativity!

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