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Aussie businesses eager to enter the metaverse, concerned by security

Australian businesses are set to lead the charge in metaverse investment, according to a new report by cyber security company Tenable.

user icon Daniel Croft
Fri, 16 Dec 2022
Aussie businesses eager to enter the metaverse, concerned by security
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The report, titled Measure Twice, Cut Once: Meta-curious Organisations Relay Security Concerns Even as They Plunge Into Virtual Worlds, surveyed 1,500 cyber security professionals, 500 each from Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States.

The study found that 74 per cent of respondents planned to do business in the Metaverse within the next two years.

This is compared to 67 per cent in the UK and 61 per cent in the US.


Currently, the US has the highest metaverse penetration with 34 per cent of respondents in the US saying they had launched offerings in the past six months, while Australia had half that at 17 per cent and the UK only slightly more at 18 per cent.

The report cites Bloomberg in saying that metaverse will be an US$800 billion industry (roughly AU$1.18 trillion) as early as 2024. This number could be as high as US$5 trillion (roughly AU$7.41 trillion) by 2030, according to McKinley & Company.

The main benefits and opportunities that drew businesses to the metaverse were enhanced customer engagement, improved learning and training, and remote working and better collaboration, with the latter being a growing concern for many businesses since working from home started at the beginning of the pandemic.

Despite the financial incentives, increased collaboration and deeper engagement, businesses are majorly concerned by the security risks entering into a platform that is entirely digital brings, particularly in light of the current wave of cyber crime.

Respondents from all three countries agreed that security was a core concern when it came to the metaverse. This was the greatest concern in Australia at 43 per cent.

The prospect of security breaches and identity theft was also the biggest barrier for businesses looking to enter the metaverse, according to 35 per cent of Australian respondents.

Ninety-three per cent of all combined respondents said that it would be important to identify vulnerabilities before code is run on the metaverse.

Training and appropriate staffing was also a key concern, with 31 per cent of Australian respondents saying that they were worried about the lack of trained security professionals specific to the metaverse.

Fifty-five per cent of all 1,500 respondents had said that investing in training its current staff in cyber security would be necessary to support their metaverse investments, while businesses who are investing in their own metaverse will be hiring specialised talent in IT (52 per cent), metaverse cyber security (49 per cent) and software development (46 per cent).

The metaverse, if successful, is a platform that is set to change the very nature of work. In doing so, it is venturing into new territory, which means that legal and privacy standards are inadequate or inconsistent.

The new digital platform will see personal data collected and processed at an unprecedented level as businesses go completely online.

Thirty-five per cent of Australians expressed worry surrounding the lack of “clear process for how the privacy of data can be handled in the metaverse”.

Despite security concerns, a high percentage of the survey’s respondents were comfortable with using third-party services for personal identifiable information collection.

The US had the highest percentage of “very comfortable” respondents at 58 per cent, followed by Australia at 42 per cent and the UK at 33 per cent.

The US, however, also had the highest percentage of respondents keen to implement cyber security within their business service offerings immediately with their move to the metaverse at 71 per cent. The UK followed at 49 per cent and Australia at 47 per cent.

Daniel Croft

Daniel Croft

Born in the heart of Western Sydney, Daniel Croft is a passionate journalist with an understanding for and experience writing in the technology space. Having studied at Macquarie University, he joined Momentum Media in 2022, writing across a number of publications including Australian Aviation, Cyber Security Connect and Defence Connect. Outside of writing, Daniel has a keen interest in music, and spends his time playing in bands around Sydney.

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