Through this lens we explore the idea that even good technology can be used for bad purposes. Hostile’ tech can encompass not just criminal tech such as malware and hacking tools but also use cases like GDPR, Data security, advertising and customer targeting. One example is bias in algorithms or machine learning systems.
These may exhibit ‘hostile’ tendencies towards certain customer groups without having been compromised or deliberately designed that way, because of unplanned and unnoticed distortions in the way they were constructed or developed.
Even lawful activity such as tracking people as they surf the web can be viewed as hostile by some people, while other people freely give up their privacy in return for perceived benefits such as target advertising.
Some trends to watch in this space include: privacy-respecting computation, privacy-aware communications, differential privacy and, in the more distant future, quantum machine learning and the metaverse.