According to the Cisco
® Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, global mobile data traffic grew 69 percent in 2014, which made last year's mobile data traffic nearly 30 times the size of the entire global Internet in 2000. Almost half a billion (497 million) mobile devices and connections were added in 2014.
That brings today's total to nearly 25 billion connected devices that collect and store our data every day - an already staggering number expected to double in the next 5 years. Home automation systems, wearables, smart appliances, connected sensors, and even vehicles, all together make up the "Internet of Things." Devices that "talk" to each other and share data show promise for retailers, healthcare providers, energy utilities, auto manufacturers, and beyond. But as with any new technology, we are faced with new questions:
That last point is important, because by 2018, mobile data traffic will exceed fifteen Exabytes, that's 12.7 million years of online video streaming per month. What's more much of it will be shared automatically, machine to machine, without us even knowing.
guidelines released by the FTC suggest growing concerns about the potential privacy and security risks to consumers. While no legislation has been introduced, Congress has also shown a heightened interest in the Internet of Things, including a new bipartisan caucus to educate Members on the issue.
The safety and convenience benefits of the Internet of Things are hard to deny. With a projected global worth of more than $6 trillion, there is major potential to improve efficiency and productivity for businesses; and for peoples' lives. Balancing the security threat posed by widespread sharing of data with concerns of constraining innovation and government overreach won't be easy - this promises to be a public policy issue to watch closely in 2015.
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