Web 3.0 and the metaverse are forging a new virtual digital world. Both promise an immersive virtual experience that will challenge online connectivity as we know it. Whilst this digital future promises countless benefits it raises concerns, particularly in security. Huge investments are being made to paint this digital future. Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg has rebranded to Meta Platforms. Like the evolution of web innovation changes, Zuckerberg is banking on the future.
Internet technology evolves rapidly. Digital innovations spawn from ideas into reality in an instant. The World Wide Web is currently experiencing one of these innovations. As we speak, the WWW is in a transitional phase, shifting from Web 2.0 to Web 3.0.
Web 3.0 adopts artificial intelligence and the metaverse. Both innovations encourage a completely immersive experience where exploration is cutting-edge and simplified. Digital devices such as chatbot use cases will be fully realized in a virtual reality environment. Web 3.0 and the metaverse want us to experience the reality of the outside world from the inside.
What is Web 3.0 and the metaverse
Technology shapes the internet of the future. Web 3.0 and the metaverse will shape how we’ll consume content in the future. Let’s take a deeper look into both innovations.
Web 3.0 aims to streamline app building platforms for online developers. This is performance popular apps and others will be able to benefit from moving forwards. It also aims to stop this involvement by introducing a fully decentralized and democratized internet. It will produce a semantic web where all data is connected.
This will be utilized through underlying blockchain technology. It will enable users to interact with online services governed by peer-to-peer networks rather than a single entity server. This means there will be no centralized ownership of content and users have full control of their digital identity.
The metaverse is a fully immersive successor to the internet. It’s a combination of virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR), gaming, cryptocurrencies, and social media.
It’s a 3D reality where the user’s digital world is immersive. In the metaverse, a company’s remote office phone system will take on the form of VR headsets and meetings between digital avatars. Simply put, the metaverse will transform the internet from 2D to 3D.
Examples of this innovation would be a virtual seat at a sports game or trying on clothes in a digital store.
5 cybersecurity risks and concerns
As the ecosystem of Web 3.0 and the metaverse is still in development, cybersecurity risks go beyond today’s scope of view. Let’s take a look at 5 risks and concerns facing the future of the internet.
A recent survey revealed that 74% of Americans are more concerned with their online privacy than ever before. With the technological advancement of Web 3.0, the risks are unknown and questions have arisen about future digital security. In a fully immersive existence, safety in interactions will need to be monitored.
One of the main privacy issues with the metaverse is the sheer amount of personal data available. The data collected on individual participants will be far more intimate and in-depth. Companies will be able to track biometric data such as facial expressions and vocal inflections in real-time. This means user behavior will be monitored and used for personal advertising campaigns. A user’s privacy on Web 3.0 will be non-existent if stolen.
Web 3.0 decentralizes the internet. It gives data back to the entities who own it. Whilst this model benefits the user, the lack of central data access makes it more difficult to police cybercrime. This will be especially problematic when it comes to online harassment, hate speech, and child abuse images. In a decentralized web, who will enforce worldwide hosted content?
Without central control and access to data, policing cybercrime will be impossible. The advantages of a centralized web ensure governments make large corporations enforce laws.
Cybercrime will rely on users taking more responsibility for their data and online interactions. Services such as a Myraah Web 3.0 locker secure a user’s data in a private locker, allowing them to take control of their online security.
Cryptocurrency wallets store digital assets such as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and cryptocurrencies. Carrying your wallet in the metaverse will be an essential act. Your digital wallet will include your avatars, avatar clothing, and avatar animations.
Your crypto wallet will also be linkable to real-world identities. You will be able to buy music, movies, and apps and it will be associated with your reputation scores. So your actions in the metaverse will affect your real-world reality.
Risks of decentralization
Decentralization is key to ensuring the internet remains a public resource that is available to all users. The open-source nature of Web 3.0 means that contributors can collaborate from day one.
With this transparency comes extreme security vulnerabilities of integrated data. Only one account will contain all a user’s personal data and it will be protected by a single password.
Centralized platforms are powered by hi-tech technologies. Decentralized networks are new and because of this they face latency issues. Web 2.0 can operate the best small business phone systems and other remote capabilities with ease. Web 3.0 runs on a decentralized network that is facing a gradual transition rather than a rapid one. So, it is behind in terms of connectivity.
Web 3.0 and the metaverse is still in its infancy. We don’t fully understand its possibilities as well as its negatives. A decentralized digital landscape sounds great on paper, but will the general public want to go along for the journey?
(The author is Mr. Gaurav Kumar, Co-Founder & CEO , Myraah and the views expressed in this article are his own)