Nearly half of IT leaders fear AI will replace them by 2030

A third also believe that the technology would eventually work to completely automate all cyber security

Two-fifths of IT leaders (41%) believe that artificial intelligence (AI) will make them redundant within the next 10 years.

Trend Micro research found that only 9% of respondents were confident AI wouldn’t replace their job within the next decade, and 32% said they thought the technology would eventually work to completely automate all cyber security, leaving little need for human intervention.

Nearly a quarter (24%) of IT directors and managers, CIOs, and CTOs polled also claimed data access will be tied to biometric or DNA data by 2030, making unauthorized access impossible.

Bharat Mistry, technical director at Trend Micro, said that while AI is a useful tool in defending against threats, its value can only be harnessed in combination with human expertise.

“We shouldn’t worry about jobs becoming obsolete. The profession will certainly adapt and evolve in new ways. In the meantime, AI and automation can help us to alleviate the problems caused by critical skills shortages,” Mistry said.

The survey also found that nearly one in five respondents (19%) believed attackers using AI to enhance their arsenal will be commonplace by 2025, while 15% believed security will be self-managing and automated.

Within the next five years, respondents also predicted that early adopters of “digital immortality” (AI facsimiles of a person after death) will start to appear online.

Of those surveyed, 13% also said that most organizations will have significantly reduced property investment as remote working becomes the norm and that many governments will have begun plans for a “single digital identity.”

Within the next 12 months, 45% of IT managers said they would focus on staff training and education, with 38% focusing on remote working and deploying more automation to support SOC teams.

Dr. Jamie Gloor, senior management lecturer at the University of Exeter Business School, said if AI could master soft skills, such as humor, robots could be perceived and responded to as leaders.

“Humorous robots are tapping into an effective social strategy that makes them able to handle difficult situations,” said Gloor. He added that humor could open up new doors previously thought shut for robot leadership, “from providing critical feedback as part of an annual performance review ... to arbitrating a conflict between co-workers, to employee on-boarding and team-building.”

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