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    Call to keep ethics in sight amidst digital revolution

    Hakim Hayat

    With the digital revolution taking the world by storm at a rapid pace, it is imperative for us to never lose sight of ethical values in our pursuit of the efficiencies and conveniences offered by innovative technologies, said Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Muda Dr Abdul Fattaah yesterday.

    He made the statement at the Local Business Development (LBD) Programme 2019 organised by Asia-Inc Forum themed ‘The Next Level: How to Leverage the Digital Revolution’ at The Empire Hotel & Country Club in Jerudong.

    Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Muda Dr Abdul Fattaah, who is also Chairman of the Board of Directors of Baiduri Bank, said that this is vital since many of the opportunities that come with the digital revolution are global in nature and include those that will affect humanity for generations to come.

    “The opportunities that come with it should ideally lead to benefits that are good for humanity as a whole,” he added.

    Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Muda Dr Abdul Fattaah also said that the first to adopt imaginative and innovative ways by which technology can be leveraged to meet the changing demands of modern consumers are the ones who will benefit most financially in this era.

    Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Muda Dr Abdul Fattaah, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Baiduri Bank. PHOTO: BAHYIAH BAKIR

    He added that foremost among the emerging opportunities include the application of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to address the complex issues of climate change; and the use of block chain technology to improve data security and to facilitate international trade in emerging economies.

    In the midst of rapid technological development, Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Muda Dr Abdul Fattaah also noted challenges that have arisen either directly or indirectly, because of the rapid advancements in technology.

    “There is no doubt that digital transformation has brought about massive financial benefits to many. And most of us would have absolutely no problem with this. But these gains to national economies and even the anticipated global prosperity must be evaluated not only from these financial benefits, but also by reference to the human values that we cherish,” he highlighted.

    He also noted some serious social concern with addiction to ‘digital approval’ and digital devices, which he said limits people and prevents them from developing the deep meaningful relationships that are needed to overcome the stress that builds up in their lives.

    Further in his remarks, Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Muda Dr Abdul Fattaah also relayed his concerns about the policies and practices pursued by corporations that are dedicated adherents of the data-driven approach, in the deployment of technologies which include facial recognition algorithms and other tech innovations which routinely invade our privacy.

    He also shared his perspective that the greatest threat to humankind will come, not from robots or computers, but from within the nature of human beings themselves.

    “It follows that we must protect ourselves and our society from those who would wilfully engage in the wrongful and malicious use of the technological innovations spawned by the Digital Economy,” he said, while also adding that balance is the ultimate key in pursuit of the digital revolution.

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