Obviously, the evolution of work is also part of the trends to be followed carefully, especially after the organizational changes imposed by the pandemic, with many companies still engaged in the search for hybrid formulas between smart working and in-presence work. It is estimated that, even in 2022, 98% of events will have at least one remote participant, but offices will have to be transformed more and more into safe and functional places of aggregation. Models must be adopted to allow those who work remotely to feel fully included, so that they can collaborate as effectively as if they were in presence. Performance will increasingly be evaluated based on achieved results, with hours spent in the office being discarded as a parameter.
Cybersecurity is a fundamental theme, an essential element of any project of technological innovation, digital transformation, and evolution of services. 2021 proved to be a rather difficult year in terms of cybersecurity; according to the latest Clusit report, in the first half of 2021 there was an increase in the number of cyber-attacks perpetrated against European companies from 15% to 25% of all companies. Italy, in particular, is the second-most targeted European country. Often, companies consider cybersecurity as a cost and not as an investment, but this is a glaring and very risky error; moreover, investing in increasingly advanced and secure technologies can bring advantages on many fronts.
In the future, we will probably implement passwordless solutions, where access to systems, services and applications will not be controlled by codes that are often lost (most cyber-attacks originate from stolen credentials), but it will be possible through identification and behavior parameters, such as security keys and biometric recognition. So, it will no longer be necessary to remember credentials, because they will be something that each individual will have.
Last but not least, the issue of environmental sustainability: we will adopt digital technologies that can foster a more sustainable world, moving from a linear economy (products are used and thrown away) to a circular economy (products are used and recycled) making better use of natural resources. Digital technologies will be used as platforms to foster a more sustainable business, reducing the impact of networks and datacenters, and investing in efficient infrastructures and solutions that enable the transformation of entire sectors such as agriculture, smart factories, smart grid.
It must be said that today’s information technologies generate about 4% of global CO2 emissions. By 2025, the IT transition of the industrial sector alone will have a carbon footprint equivalent to that produced by about 436 million vehicles per year. Data centers consume 10 to 50 times more energy per square meter than a traditional office and are alone responsible for about 1% of global energy demand. In one year, online video streaming services generated about 300 million tons of CO2, the equivalent of Spain's annual emissions. Just sending an email with an attachment contributes 50 grams of CO2 into the atmosphere.
Digital will be one of the most important weapons for the green transition, with an impact by 2030 equal to the incremental impact of renewable energy. Overall, it is estimated that between 2020 and 2030, digital will help cut up to 10% of emissions from 2019 levels (37 million tons of CO2 annually) if we adopt the most virtuous technologies.