It has been reported that the move to the Metaverse, an open-ended collection of digital experiences, environments and assets leveraging virtual technologies, is imminent. Backed by tech giants including Meta, Microsoft and Google, this environment has the potential to change many aspects of everyday life, from education to healthcare.
The metaverse is still in its infancy and no one really knows whether it will succeed and what form it will ultimately take. That being said, it is still an open medium in which anyone can participate and contribute. But trying to plan anything remotely specific for the metaverse would be like trying to prepare for smartphones in the 1990s—it’s impossible to predict what form the metaverse will take, or if it will catch on at all. It’s too early to make serious headway in protecting against hacks and cyberattacks on the metaverse.One trend is easy to predict, though. Fraud and other crimes that target humans instead of hardware and software will adapt to the metaverse if enough people use it. Advanced fee fraud and phishing existed before the internet and will continue to plague us in the metaverse. Our technology advances, but us humans pretty much stay the same, and we haven’t gotten much better at detecting fraud.
I applaud the call for police cybercrime units to familiarise themselves with the “Metaverse.” I can almost guarantee that the bad actors of the world have already begun probing the Metaverse in search of virtual dark alleyways where they can hide and perform their nefarious deeds. Considering the Metaverse will be run by Meta and Facebook, I can also guarantee the Metaverse will be less than secure and even less private. I recommend staying away from the Metaverse until we see what privacy and security perils await us.