Predictions 2018 – 18

December 18, 2017

What is coming?

Well, drones for one,
they are being sold in all sizes to the public with no warnings about legal
usage, and so the possibility of actually enforcing the existing laws is going
to be increasingly slim. I wonder if laws will have to change, if only for
really small ones that are not such a safety risk. I think that in the long
term the solution is technical, ie drones with such good defensive systems and
sensors, and built in no fly zones, and so on, that even an idiot or malicious
user would have a hard time doing anything harmful – and then laws allowing
those types of drones. I bet we see some sort of issue in 2018 especially with
so many sold over this Christmas.

The crypto wars
continue – battles with Apple and WhatsApp, etc. Usually tech wins such battles
for lots of good reasons, but who knows? Maybe we’ll see attempts to use the Investigatory
Powers Act 2016 on someone in 2018.

Surveillance vs privacy
is the other closely related war, and again, these different legal fronts are
clashing – where will the balance come? Will we see some of the IPA
surveillance stuff in 2018? Of course we probably won’t know about it even if
it happens.

A similar battle
exists for commerce vs privacy, and we have GDPR coming in there. Will the
provisions work as expected, protecting privacy, or will some be unworkable in
practice? We’ll definitely see some issues in 2018, I am sure.

Self-driving cars are
always a fun topic. My prediction there is simple – the issues will not be
decided by tech or law, but by insurance companies using cold statistics. Tech
will improve and usage will be legal, and insurance premiums will ‘drive’
people to go for self-driving and assisted-driving cars. The question is,
perhaps, which of these milestones will we see in 2018

Will we see the first
enforcement of EU Net Neutrality laws in 2018? I wonder.

Rev. Adrian Kennard is the MD of UK-based ISP Andrews &
Arnold Ltd – Twitter: @The RealRevK