The end of the year typically brings with it a small library of reports with predictions for the year ahead. The value in these reports is less in the precise predictions themselves—given how interconnected the world is, no one has a perfect crystal ball. Rather, the forecasts help frame the thinking about the possibilities for the coming year, and what they might mean for you. With that in mind, I would like to share five predictions for 2023 that resonated with me and explain what they could mean for endpoint management in your organization. After reviewing these predictions, I encourage you to review your current endpoint security posture, and how Microsoft Intune can help further improve it in 2023.
1. Strong cloud adoption rates will continue
Macroeconomists may be pessimistic about gross domestic product growth in Europe and the United States in 2023, but even in weak macroeconomic scenarios, cloud growth rates remain stellar.1 Gartner® predicts almost 30 percent growth for infrastructure as a service and almost 25 percent growth for platform as a service in 2023, as compared to 2022 in the worldwide public cloud user spending category. A September 2022 survey of chief technology officers (CTOs) by Evercore-ISI asked the top things they would do in response to reduced budgets or inflationary pressure.2 The top answer (from 44 percent of CTOs): increase their use of the cloud. Gartner® predicts that by 2025 more than 90 percent of clients will use cloud-based unified endpoint management (UEM) tools, up from 50 percent in 2022. So, if you have not migrated your UEM to the cloud yet, 2023 is the year to start.
2. Security will remain the top issue for CTOs into 2023
When asked in September about their highest priority project (in terms of incremental spending), 42 percent of CTOs said cloud security. Network security was the second most common response, with analytics third.2 Credit Suisse recently polled CTOs on how different categories in their IT budget would grow.3 In 2021 and 2022, security was ranked top, with an 11 percent increase. Asked to predict the growth in security spending in 2026, security again ranked highest, but the expected increase was even more: 14 percent. Underlying factors provide color to the raw growth numbers. The geopolitical storm continues, and new avenues continue to emerge for hackers. I expect to hear even more about deepfake videos and ransomware as a service in 2023. So, how do chief information security officers (CISOs) strengthen their organization’s defenses in 2023? We would propose two initiatives: first, ensure security software is suitably integrated with a unified console to enable fewer points of vulnerability and more automation. By extension, this might mean consolidating vendors. Second, tackle the human aspect: invest in upskilling staff on how best to be aware of potential attacks.4
3. Worker mobility will increase further
The past few years have changed the model for knowledge workers. 2023 will see several shifts that will add to the hybrid work from anywhere (and hence, protect everywhere) trend. Next year will see mass adoption of 5G capable devices: Juniper Research estimates that there will be 600 million more 5G connections added in 2023 alone.5 Technological trends will be compounded by demographic trends, such as “productivity paranoia,” where workers want to show they are being productive, no matter where they are. What does this mean for CISOs? New working styles, new networks, and new devices mean new attack vectors. In 2023, be ready to protect your workers who are working from anywhere, not just from home.
4. CTOs will need to pay more attention to local factors
There is always a balance between global and local initiatives, but in 2023, we expect that it will be increasingly difficult to just adopt a one-size-fits-all global shortcut. We are seeing an increasing number of national regulations related to data sovereignty, with implications for where that data is stored and secured.6 2023 will see further digital transformation of public sector agencies. These agencies often have more country-specific security or compliance rules compared to their private sector counterparts. As such, CISOs need to ensure their endpoint management solutions (and, indeed, their entire technology architecture) can adapt to handle extra local requirements.
5. Truly transformative technology will rise to the top
My final prediction is that 2023 will see further clarity on the difference between genuinely transformative technology and tech that has been overhyped. One technology that I expect to compare favorably for enterprises in 2023 will be more advanced forms of automation, such as AI. AI start-ups have seen more than USD100 billion in venture capital investment since 2020, in everything from the development of new drugs to new ways to create art and writing (and, perhaps, eventually, transform how blogs are created!).7 Security represents a great opportunity for advanced automation and AI, given the nature of the ongoing problems CISOs must grapple with. As such, while new AI-generated images may garner the headlines, away from the limelight we expect many other enterprise software solutions to benefit from both sophisticated AI and simply greater automation.8 For example, in endpoint management, Gartner® sees that by 2027, UEM and digital employee experience tools will converge—to drive autonomous endpoint management, reducing human effort by at least 40 percent. The more that security tasks are automated, the more time is freed up for more strategic work by your key staff.
I hope you found these 2023 trends thought-provoking. I would encourage you to continue to think about what the macro situation might mean specifically for your organization and translate that into an action plan for your Microsoft Intune assets in 2023. In the meantime, I wish you all a safe and thoughtful holiday season and wish you continued success in the new year.
Learn more about how Microsoft Intune can simplify your endpoint management:
- Reduce your overall total cost of ownership with a new Microsoft Intune plan.
- Microsoft publishes new report on holistic insider risk management.
- Microsoft Intune blog.
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1World Economic Outlook, October 2022: Countering the Cost-of-Living Crisis, IMF. October 15, 2022.
2Evercore-ISI Quarterly Enterprise Technology Spending Survey, September 15, 2022.
3Credit Suisse CIO Survey, Credit Suisse. October 6, 2022.
4What cybersecurity trends are expected in 2023? Muhammad Zulhusni, November 29, 2022.
55G Service Revenue to Reach $315 Billion Globally in 2023, Juniper Research. October 23, 2022.
6Microsoft launches its Cloud for Sovereignty, Frederic Lardinois. July 19, 2022.
7State of AI Q2’22 Report, CB Insights. August 10, 2022.
8How a computer designed this week’s cover, The Economist. June 11, 2022.
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