Web 3.0 : governance, risks and safeguards
Publication of this article was funded by the Stellenbosch University Open Access Fund.
Many organisations consider technology as a significant asset to generate income and control cost. The Web is recognised as the fastest growing publication medium of all time. This mass of unstructured information presents many new opportunities for organisations. The Web acts as an enabler for technological advancement, and has matured in its own unique way. From the static informative characteristics of Web 1.0, it progressed into the interactive experience Web 2.0 provides. The next phase of Web evolution, Web 3.0, is already in progress. Web 3.0 entails an integrated Web experience where the machine will be able to understand and catalogue data in a manner similar to humans. This will facilitate a world wide data warehouse where any format of data can be shared and understood by any device over any network. Organisations need to be ready, and acquire knowledge about the opportunities and risks arising from Web 3.0 technologies. The objective of this study is to investigate the risks an organisation will be exposed to when interacting with Web 3.0 technologies. The study proposes to provide insight into the risks arising from the use of Web 3.0, and to recommend possible safeguards to mitigate these risks to an acceptable level. Identified opportunities can mainly be characterised as the autonomous integration of data and services which increases the pre-existing capabilities of Web services, as well as the creation of new functionalities. The identified risks mainly concern unauthorised access and manipulation of data; autonomous initiation of actions, and the development of scripts and languages. Risks will be mitigated by control procedures (examples include encryptions; access control; filtering; language and ontology development control procedures; education of consumers and usage policies). The findings will assist management to identify the key focus areas when implementing this new technology