Anurag Aggarwal is a Board Member of The Mobile Ecosystem Forum
Every new year brings new challenges. What does 2023 hold for mobile industry?
Blockchain will be at the forefront
Blockchain is most commonly known as the technology behind cryptocurrency. The blockchain is a distributed public blockchain of information. This technology has many potential uses beyond cryptocurrency. Telecom and healthcare have also started to use blockchain to help ensure transparency and veracity.
For example, take a Cost per Acquisition (CPA), which is a system where messages go through many hoops from the enterprise to the end users. While enterprises need to ensure visibility and traceability of the entire chain, this poses some security and privacy challenges. Blockchain can be used by organisations to improve information flow, transparency, and visibility at all levels.
India’s distributed ledger technology regulation is the largest blockchain use case. This regulation in India has allowed over 40 billion transactions to be processed monthly through the blockchain.
As more regulation is put in place to ensure enterprise security, blockchain will be used more often in a variety of applications. This includes managing end-to–end visibility of Call Detail Records and enhancing data privacy.
I anticipate that we will see more blockchain technologies in the next year, but less attention on digital currencies.
Reverse brain drain
The dominant market in technology has been the West. However, due to digital lockdown, the workforce has been shifting between different organizations and geographical locations.
Take India. India, a developing country, has often had to align its foreign and economic policies with the West. India is home to about a sixth the global population. Prime Minister Modi recognized this potential and over the past three decades has implemented a very successful program that will make India a self-contained economic nation.
Therefore, I see 2023 as a time of reverse brain drain. There are many opportunities, especially in the telecom and technology space. Many of the talent that left India for the US and UK will likely return to India over the next few years.
This will have one effect: India will become the dominant tech country and more Indians will invent solutions for India than for the West.
Other countries might follow suit. China and African nations should be watched. China and Africa, with their large populations and easier access to technology and information could be the tech powerhouses in the future.
It is essential to prevent fraud
As the global tech market has grown, so has the shadow economy of fake account. Robots set up fake accounts and serve ads to them, draining advertising budget. It’s also hard to estimate the size of this shadow economy – it could already be very big.
The telecoms industry plays a crucial role in this economy. Consider social media as an example. There are thousands upon thousands of robots that create fake accounts. Many SMS are sent to activate and service those accounts.
On the other side, mobile customers are receiving an unprecedented level of fraudulent phishing (or ‘smishing’ as we call it for SMS) messages with dangerous links.
Many organizations are currently working on holistic, 360-degree solutions to address these issues. They would combine multiple data sources in a data pool that could be analysed and used to identify fraudulent transactions as soon triggered.
Organisations can use machine learning and artificial intelligence to detect patterns and flag potential fraud situations. They can then intercept these fraudulent or spurious links, displaying a landing page where a user is notified that it’s possibly a fraudulent page, similar to the warnings users get in the likes of Google Chrome. They will be able to quickly track down and block fraudulent accounts, making it more difficult to commit fraud.
These shifts may not be immediately apparent to consumers, but industry players will see the foundations for the future mobile industry. It is important to understand and prepare for these changes in order not to be left behind.