We live in a fast-changing world where businesses must adapt to a growing digital population, rising consumer expectations and the increasing risk of fraud.

Digital identities

The number of digital identity documents is growing fast. By 2021, 136 countries will be issuing more than 640 million electronic ID documents annually, giving 3.75 billion people worldwide a digital identity. The World Bank lists digital identity as one of the four key enablers of inclusive digital development.

From January 2016 to January 2017, global internet users increased by 10% – an increase of 354 million people – and active social media users grew by 21% – an additional 482 million people. 62% of adults worldwide now have an account at a financial institution or through a mobile device, up from 51% in 2011.

(Sources: Acuity Market Intelligence, We Are Social, Global Findex – World Bank)

Customer experience

Offering products and services is no longer enough, successful companies will be the ones focused on delivering the most compelling experiences. In fact, 56% of business leaders believe that customer experience is their top digital transformation priority.

According to Accenture, 63% of businesses worldwide plan to improve their online customer experience in 2017, and 88% of firms are using third-party providers for at least one component of their digital transformation.

(Sources: World Economic Forum ‘Digital Transformation Initiative’ 2017, Accenture Interactive)

Digital globalisation

Cheaper and better technology is creating a more connected world. 8 billion devices are now connected to the internet and, by 2030, that number is forecast to grow to 1 trillion.

Digital flows – which were practically non-existent just 15 years ago – now exert a larger impact on GDP growth than the centuries-old trade in goods.

Even the smallest enterprises can be born global. 86% of tech-based start-ups surveyed by McKinsey report some type of cross-border activity.

(Sources: World Economic Forum, McKinsey Global Institute)

Changing regulations

According to Deloitte, RegTech has a very bright future, with a huge amount of opportunity for those developing this type of technology to automate and enable the world of regulatory assessment and control management.

Fintech start-ups are making the most of a more relaxed financial regulatory environment within the EU, which from 2018 will also see banks forced to share consumer data, as long as consumers give their permission.

People share data based on trust, and so we believe the new EU General Data Protection Regulation (‘GDPR’) will have a positive impact on data quality going forward.

In the UK, changing Right to Work legislation and the implications of Brexit will provide opportunity for those who can support businesses with their compliance.

Global fraud

According to the Kroll Annual Global Fraud and Risk Report, the proportion of executives that reported their companies fell victim to fraud in the past year rose significantly to 82%, from 75% in 2015 and 70% in 2013. This highlights the escalating threat to corporate reputation and regulatory compliance.

Global ecommerce growth

Research by eMarketer demonstrates retail ecommerce sales are projected to more than double between 2016 and 2020, reaching a total of more than $4 trillion globally.