11 March 2017

*** A Repeat of the Plaza Accord

A strong dollar will undermine U.S. President Donald Trump's plans to reduce the United States' trade deficit. 

If the dollar's value continues to rise, Trump may consider unilateral or, failing that, multilateral currency interventions to bring it back down. 

Negotiating a new coordinated monetary intervention in the spirit of the 1985 Plaza Accord will be onerous, however. 


The value of the U.S. dollar has risen rapidly over the past three years, up 26 percent since summer 2014. First, a divergence between the expected interest rates of the U.S. Federal Reserve and those of the world's other central banks, namely the Bank of Japan and the European Central Bank, brought capital flooding into the United States. Two years later, Donald Trump's election to the U.S. presidency gave the dollar another boost. And if his proposed tax reform package and infrastructure spending plan turn out to be as ambitious as Trump has promised, the dollar's value may well keep on rising. A surging dollar, however, would have distinct drawbacks for the Trump administration, undermining the president's stated goal to reduce the United States' trade deficit. In fact, Trump has said the dollar is already too strong, and his economic team has accused other countries of undervaluing their currencies.

*** Vault 7: CIA Hacking Tools Revealed

Today, Tuesday 7 March 2017, WikiLeaks begins its new series of leaks on the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. Code-named "Vault 7" by WikiLeaks, it is the largest ever publication of confidential documents on the agency.

The first full part of the series, "Year Zero", comprises 8,761 documents and files from an isolated, high-security network situated inside the CIA's Center for Cyber Intelligence in Langley, Virgina. It follows an introductory disclosure last month of CIA targeting French political parties and candidates in the lead up to the 2012 presidential election.

Recently, the CIA lost control of the majority of its hacking arsenal including malware, viruses, trojans, weaponized "zero day" exploits, malware remote control systems and associated documentation. This extraordinary collection, which amounts to more than several hundred million lines of code, gives its possessor the entire hacking capacity of the CIA. The archive appears to have been circulated among former U.S. government hackers and contractors in an unauthorized manner, one of whom has provided WikiLeaks with portions of the archive.

"Year Zero" introduces the scope and direction of the CIA's global covert hacking program, its malware arsenal and dozens of "zero day" weaponized exploits against a wide range of U.S. and European company products, include Apple's iPhone, Google's Android and Microsoft's Windows and even Samsung TVs, which are turned into covert microphones.

** Backsliding on Pakistan

Brahma Chellaney

Last year was an unusual year: Never before had so many Indian security bases come under attack by Pakistan-based terrorists in a single year. For example, the terrorist strike on the Pathankot air base was New Year’s gift to India, while the strike on the Indian Army’s Uri base represented a birthday gift for Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Furthermore, the number of Indian security personnel killed in gunbattles with terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir in 2016 was the highest in years.

In this light, it is remarkable that Modi is seeking to return to business as usual with Pakistan, now that the state elections are over in India and Pakistan-related issues have been sufficiently milked by him for political ends. Modi’s U-turn on the Permanent Indus Commission (PIC) issue could mark the beginning of India’s backsliding.

After the Uri attack in September, his government, with fanfare, suspended the PIC. Now, quietly, that suspension has been lifted, and a PIC meeting will soon be held in Lahore. In reality, the suspension was just a sham because the PIC missed no meeting as a result. Its annual meeting in the current financial year is being held before the March 31 deadline.

Higher education and sustainable development in South Asia

By Niamot Ali Enayet

Education changes people’s mind, attitudes, understanding, behaviour, relationship with nature and human beings. It helps to conceptualise a bigger world view before individuals irrespective of caste, colour, religion, and country. 

On the other hand, quality education has life-changing roles and long-lasting impacts on human civilisation. It develops skills and capacity. By definition, quality education is one that provides all learners with capabilities they require to become economically productive, develop sustainable livelihoods, contribute to peaceful and democratic societies and enhance individual well-being. It is the major part of measuring the United Nations-led Human Development Index (HDI) and Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), lastly Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

Education enhances communicative knowledge, ensures collaboration with people, and helps one to think critically. It also encourages people to take leadership challenges. But developing countries are missing these characteristics of quality education. People from these countries are resorting to memorising and reciting facts pedagogically. Thus these countries are facing a creativity gap within their own education system. 

US Ships, Planes Challenge 22 Countries’ Claims — Not Just China’s


Threat range of a hypothetical Chinese missile base in the South China Sea (CSBA graphic)

WASHINGTON: In 2016, the Defense Department flew aircraft or steamed ships through territories claimed by Albania, Brazil, Italy, Japan, Malta, and, well, China, according to the Pentagon’s annual report released today. So should Beijing be relieved it was not the sole focus of American Freedom of Navigation Operations (FONOPS) or should it feel slighted that it wasn’t our sole focus? Of course, China’s Pacific pushiness does get pride of place, with the most extensive single entry — but the 22-nation list also includes US allies and neutral powers like tiny Malta.

The Dragon Is Cornered – Here’s What To Do Next

Rakesh Krishnan Simha

China is the only country among the 15-member UN Security Council to oppose the ban on Pakistan’s Maulana Masood Azhar, with even countries such as Saudi Arabia backing India.

The Chinese cannot afford an encirclement by the US, Japan and India. It would be the ultimate nightmarish scenario for the dragon.

If there is any doubt that China, rather than Pakistan, is the biggest roadblock to India’s rise as a global power, just look at our northern neighbour’s actions. In an era when Islamic extremism poses the greatest threat to the world, Beijing has kept blocking India’s proposal to include Pakistan’s Maulana Masood Azhar in a United Nations blacklist of people linked to Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State. China is the only country among the 15-member UN Security Council to oppose the ban on Azhar, with even countries such as Saudi Arabia backing India.

Beijing’s move is happening in the backdrop of growing violence in its Xinjiang province where Uighur Muslims have launched deadly attacks on Chinese citizens. Uighurs are also known to operate in sync with Pakistani terror groups. So why is China resorting to short-sighted opportunism?

'China Has Its Own Agenda, It Won't Dance' to Washington's Tune

Beijing's planned 7 percent increase in defense spending is the lowest in years, with Chinese leaders unlikely to reverse this trend despite the fact that last week President Donald Trump proposed a $54 billion hike to America's military budget, Dr. Arthur Ding told Radio Sputnik.

"The likelihood that next year [Beijing will announce] a large increase in the defense budget is quite low because China has its own agenda and it will probably not be dancing to [Washington's tune]," he asserted.

Earlier this month, spokeswoman for the National People's Congress (NPC) Fu Ying announced that the country will increase its defense spending by 7 percent, the lowest rate after decades of nearly uninterrupted double digit increases. On Monday, US President Donald Trump said that he wants to raise the defense budget by $54 billion by limiting funding to what the US administration sees as low priority initiatives, including foreign aid and environmental programs.

What ISIS Will Do After Mosul Falls


They have options, write two terrorism scholars.

The Islamic State is reeling. With its finances cut in half over the past six months, its media and information operations in tatters, and the offensive in western Mosul eating through its territory, the end of its so-called caliphate across the Middle East seems near. While a clear-cut victory is far from inevitable, at the current rate, it is conceivable that U.S. forces and their allies will defeat ISIS in Iraq and Syria by killing and capturing its fighters, driving the group from key cities and villages in what formerly constituted its vaunted caliphate, and ultimately taking Raqqa, its stronghold.

The focus, then, will shift to what ISIS’s foreign fighters—who at their peak numbered tens of thousands from dozens of countries—will do next. There are several possibilities.

When a conflict ends, either through force or negotiated settlement, transnational terrorists are likely to disperse in numerous directions. ISIS fighters are unquestionably capable: Dug in to their positions, they have skillfully used tunnels and subterranean networks to move men and materials, and have perfected the production and deployment of vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices to keep their adversaries at bay.

Tech Roundup: America’s Cyberwar Against North Korea


The KN-14, one of two types of intercontinental ballistic missiles that North Korea is developing, at a military parade in the capital, Pyongyang, in October 2015, in an image released by the nation's government.CreditKorean Central News Agency, via Reuters

It is no secret that North Korea’s military ambitions include building an intercontinental missile capable of carrying a nuclear warhead to the United States. What isn’t as well known is what the United States has been doing to thwart that ambition.

In a startling story, The New York Times’s David E. Sanger and William J. Broad detail a three-year cyberwar quietly waged against North Korea’s missile program. Some experts believe the United States has managed to delay by several years the day when North Korea will be able to threaten American cities. Others have grown increasingly skeptical of the approach.

North Korea's Peculiar Brand Of Rationality

by Rodger Baker

"Irrational" North Korea has done it again. Even with U.S. and South Korean forces gathered on the peninsula for their largest annual joint military exercises, Pyongyang launched four ballistic missiles early on March 6. Three landed in the sea west of Japan, within Tokyo's 200-nautical-mile exclusive economic zone. As expected, the "irrational" Pyongyang's actions elicited the usual cries of condemnation, triggered a brief dip in the South Korean stock market and led South Korea's acting president, Hwang Kyo Ahn, to reiterate the need for South Korea to rapidly deploy the U.S. Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense system - something that will undoubtedly further perturb North Korea’s closest friend, China.

I use "irrational" in quotation marks for a reason. I have already discussed the use of "provocation" as a lazy term for describing North Korea's actions. But Pyongyang's latest moves, as well as the current U.S. review of North Korean policy, offer an opportunity to talk about the idea of the rationality of nations, governments and leaders. North Korea provides what could be a textbook case of the mixed perceptions of rationality and irrationality - a tool with utility beyond today’s feisty standoff between the hermit state and its geopolitical rivals.

Reinforcing Failure: The Revised Executive Order Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States

By Anthony H. Cordesman

The United States and its allies—including virtually every Muslim state in the world—face a very real threat from a small fraction of violent Islamist extremists. This is a threat, however, that must be fought in partnership with our allies, and in the Muslim world, particularly the Middle East. We cannot win it at our borders, or by needlessly alienating most of the world's Muslims.

There are good reasons for fighting extremism with host country partners in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Yemen. There are still more good reasons for cooperating in this fight with largely Muslim allies like Bahrain, Egypt, Kuwait, Indonesia, Jordan, Malaysia, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, and the UAE. These same reasons make it wise to cooperate in counterterrorism efforts with the governments of African and Asian states with large Muslim populations. This struggle, or "war," will be won or lost at a global level. It is a fight for the hearts and minds of some 1.6 billion Muslims throughout the world—some 23% of the world's population.

Dollar Hedges Help UK MoD Keep Calm In Age Of Trump & Brexit


A British and an Estonian soldier during NATO exercise Sabre Strike 14 in Latvia.

WASHINGTON: Despite a turbulent Trump administration and a plummeting pound, the Anglo-American defense relationship remains strong, said the senior civil servant in the Ministry of Defence.

“Under any circumstances, we’re going to continue to work very, very closely with the States,” Stephen Lovegrove, Permanent Secretary of the UK Ministry of Defence, told reporters this morning. “Whatever is going on in the political backdrop over here, I think we’ll keep on working on, really.”

Lovegrove is in D.C. for his first visit in his current job, which he took last year. (He previously visited as permanent secretary of the Department of Energy & Climate Change). He and his aides admitted the trip was complicated by the sheer number of vacant positions in the Trump Pentagon, where Secretary Jim Mattis is the only Trump nominee so far in place. As reporters were led through the British Embassy after the roundtable, we noted a diagram of Trump appointees — with at least one recent withdrawal prominently crossed out.

U.S. Special Forces Deployed To 70% Of The World In 2016

by Niall McCarthy

U.S. Special Operations Command launched a raid in Yemen's Baida Province on Jan 29, targeting Qassim al-Rimi, the leader of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

The first high-profile special forces operation of Trump's presidency, the raid resulted in the deaths of at least 14 Al Qaeda fighters, 20 civilians and Navy SEAL William "Ryan" Owens. Three other Americans were reportedly wounded and an Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft was destroyed by U.S. forces after it was heavily damaged in a forced landing. Over the past few days, it has emerged that al-Rimi survived the raid and he has subsequently released an audio message taunting President Trump.

Special forces operations like the one in Yemen are nothing new. America's elite troops have found themselves on the frontlines constantly since 9/11, conducting operations everywhere from the dusty back alleys of North Africa to the snow-capped mountains of Afghanistan. Even though they have made headlines for high-profile operations like the prison break near Hawija in Iraq or the raid on Bin Laden's Abbottabad compound in Afghanistan, the vast majority of special forces missions across the world involve training friendly soldiers to fight, mainly so Americans don't have to.

Oil Glut: It's The Demand, Stupid!

by Reverse Engineer

I ran across a chart on Bloomberg which is perhaps the best demonstration to date that the Oil Economy is in Full On Collapse mode now. The chart is of Oil Inventory in storage, and covers the last 35 years since 1982 of Oil Inventory in the FSoA, and is the first graphic below the picture.

Do you note the Hockey Stick nature of this graph? For 35 years until 2014, Oil Inventories were kept within a very narrow range. Supply & Demand were kept in balance by the folks in control of both the extraction of Oil and the production of money. A more or less steady "growth" rate of the entire system was maintained, as oil output and population increased, the money supply increased in tandem with it, a couple of percentage points ahead which provided return on investment for those in charge of creating the money in the first place. For everyone else, this appeared as Inflation as the cost of housing, food and just about everything else besides technological gizmos kept spiraling upward.

Pay attention to your threat intelligence’s shelf life

Nick Ismail

Organisations want to be seen to be taking threat intelligence seriously, implementing strategies and platforms that absorb hundreds of indicators on a daily basis. But how many of these organisations realise that their threat data will expire? 

In order to be effective and successful as you add more sophisticated aging metrics to your approach, an expiration strategy must be simple, reliable, relatively predictable and easy to adjust 

With each day that passes, threat intelligence platforms automatically absorb hundreds, thousands, potentially millions of indicators, forcing teams, and vendors, to quickly define a threat data lifecycle or expiration strategy. 

Much like attribution, expiration efforts are very subjective and depend entirely on tools, adversaries, feeds, and the teams’ sanity point between chasing false positives and precautionary due diligence alerts. 

So what do people mean when they talk about expiration? Put simply, your threat intelligence has a shelf life and this means it needs to be kept track of, used before it goes off and got rid of when it’s past its best. 

Killing Free Trade Will Rob the World of a Highly Effective Deterrent to War


Trade agreements are rarely about economics alone. 

Donald Trump, like populists around the world, says that free trade destroys local jobs and harms economic growth. These claims are disputable, but they miss the point.

History shows that trade agreements are rarely about economics alone. They are a tool of diplomacy—a way to shore up old alliances and forge new ones. And now, perhaps, a way to avoid World War III.

Prior to the late 1800s, international trade played a relatively minor role in the global economy. Its importance grew steadily around the turn of the 19th century, in which colonialism and improved transportation brought about what’s known as the first wave of globalization.

In addition to the financial benefits, the notion that trade would also bring about a more peaceful world prevailed. “[T]here is no doubt that free trade seemed genuinely altruistic and was unconditionally supported by religious groups, the anti-slavery movement, trade unions, women’s associations, and peace campaigners,” wrote the historian Robert Comb about the mood in 19th-century Britain. “The dogma was that commercial freedom would eventually bring political freedom and international harmony, and hence the dissolution of empires.”

Who's Still Fighting Climate Change? The U.S. Military

By Laura Parker

Who's Still Fighting Climate Change? The U.S. Military

Despite political gridlock over global warming, the Pentagon is pushing ahead with plans to protect its assets from sea-level rise and other impacts. Here's how.

Tests of the Orion spacecraft were made at Naval Station Norfolk in August 2013. The low-lying base is at risk from rising seas. 

NORFOLK, VIRGINIATen times a year, the Naval Station Norfolk floods. The entry road swamps. Connecting roads become impassable. Crossing from one side of the base to the other becomes impossible. Dockside, floodwaters overtop the concrete piers, shorting power hookups to the mighty ships that are docked in the world’s largest naval base.

All it takes to cause such disarray these days is a full moon, which triggers exceptionally high tides.

Norfolk station is headquarters of the Atlantic fleet, and flooding already disrupts military readiness there and at other bases clustered around the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay, officials say. Flooding will only worsen as the seas rise and the planet warms. Sea level at Norfolk has risen 14.5 inches in the century since World War I, when the naval station was built. By 2100, Norfolk station will flood 280 times a year, according to one estimate by the Union of Concerned Scientists.

The threat of weaponized machines

By: Mark Pomerleau

While government and military leaders have incessantly been asking industry for more automation in cyber network defense tools, some are also warning of the increased threat automation is posing on the offensive side.

Vice Adm. Michael Gilday, commander of the Navy’s 10 th Fleet and Fleet Cyber Command, pointed out capabilities of the Russians along with the Mirai botnet and associated arms race that’s going on, that the degree of automation and offensive automation is spiraling. As such, the ability to defend against an adversary that’s using automated means and artificial intelligence is becoming more and more difficult, he said Feb. 21 at the AFCEA-UNSI West 2017 conference in San Diego, California.

“With the increasing automation, [adversaries are] using elements of [artificial intelligence]…to enhance the offensive,” he told reporters following his keynote address. “If you’re going to use automation in the defensive, you’re sure as heck going to use it in the offensive.”

“In my view, over the last few years, automation and use of it in cyber defense has been improving but nowhere near fast enough,” Neal Ziring, technical director for the NSA’s capabilities directorate said during a November panel address. “In fact, I would say, at least in what I’ve been able to observe, that use of automation amongst our adversaries and the threat actors is improving faster. That’s not a winning formula for us.”

Intuition, intelligence and information technology

Siddharth Pai

Having the ability to listen when the still small voice in your head is telling you that you are going in the wrong direction, is probably what is most needed in ivory towers

I happened to stumble upon an interesting article while trawling the Internet this past week.

Written by Bruce Kasanoff, who calls himself a “ghostwriter for thought leaders,” it was published in an online edition of Forbes, and dealt with the subject of intuition, or gut feeling, and whether intuition could be classified as a form of intelligence.

The article made me instantly think of my father, who was a famed intuitive diagnostician when he was alive.

Cases that had flummoxed other doctors, and had been through batteries of expensive but inconclusive tests, were brought to him; he somehow had the ability to intuit the diagnosis—with remarkable accuracy.

Threat of cyber attack on critical infrastructure is real, present danger


During his keynote address at RSA 2002—and long before Anthem, Target and Sony Pictures attacks—former White House official Richard Clarke famously said, “If you spend more on coffee than on IT security, then you will be hacked. What’s more, you deserve to be hacked.

Fast forward to the recent S4x17 ICS cybersecurity conference. Clarke described how security professionals at organizations using industrial control systems (ICS) could argue persuasively for bigger budgets to mitigate modern ICS hacking scenarios.

Despite this guidance coming from a former top counter-terrorism adviser who later served as the first White House cybersecurity czar, many management teams are still skeptical when it comes to the risk of ICS cyber attacks.

Sure, they’ve all heard about Stuxnet and the German steel mill attack. And they’ve probably heard that critical U.S. infrastructure was compromised by overseas attackers in 2014 using a variant of the BlackEnergy malware, according to ICS-CERT.

But many decision-makers are still reluctant to spend more on tighter security controls to reduce the risk of attacks on ICS.

Senate mulls national cyber policy, strategy: Deterrence vs defense

by Brad D. Williams

The Senate Committee on Armed Services heard testimony on Thursday from an expert panel on developing a national cyber policy and strategy – two long-advocated issues that so far have eluded multiple Congresses and presidential administrations.

While the topics in Thursday’s hearing were wide ranging, much of the discussion focused on the fundamental need for a two-pronged approach that entails both cyber defense – the ability to fend off cyberattacks – and cyber deterrence – the ability to discourage an enemy from ever attacking.

Committee Chair Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., a vocal proponent of developing a holistic policy and comprehensive strategy, said the issue is “the most significant challenge” in a generation and – aside from funding – “the highest priority this committee should have.”

“Treating every attack on a case-by-case basis, as we have done over the last eight years, has bred indecision and inaction,” McCain said. “The appearance of weakness has emboldened our enemies.”

He continued, “I have yet to find any serious person who believes we have a strategic advantage over our adversaries in cyberspace and, in fact, many of our civilian and military leaders have explicitly warned the opposite.”

AI Scientists Gather to Plot Doomsday Scenarios (and Solutions)

Dina Bass

Artificial intelligence boosters predict a brave new world of flying cars and cancer cures. Detractors worry about a future where humans are enslaved to an evil race of robot overlords. Veteran AI scientist Eric Horvitz and Doomsday Clock guru Lawrence Krauss, seeking a middle ground, gathered a group of experts in the Arizona desert to discuss the worst that could possibly happen -- and how to stop it.

Their workshop took place last weekend at Arizona State University with funding from Tesla Inc. co-founder Elon Musk and Skype co-founder Jaan Tallinn. Officially dubbed "Envisioning and Addressing Adverse AI Outcomes," it was a kind of AI doomsday games that organized some 40 scientists, cyber-security experts and policy wonks into groups of attackers -- the red team -- and defenders -- blue team -- playing out AI-gone-very-wrong scenarios, ranging from stock-market manipulation to global warfare.

Horvitz is optimistic -- a good thing because machine intelligence is his life's work -- but some other, more dystopian-minded backers of the project seemed to find his outlook too positive when plans for this event started about two years ago, said Krauss, a theoretical physicist who directs ASU's Origins Project, the program running the workshop. Yet Horvitz said that for these technologies to move forward successfully and to earn broad public confidence, all concerns must be fully aired and addressed. 

Are We Ready for Cyborgs? The Tech Is on Its Way

Sophia Stuart

Are we ready for cyborgs? More specifically, people with implants that enhance beyond the superficially cosmetic and into the realms of evolved beings?

Jorge Pelegrín-Borondo (Universidad de La Rioja), Eva Reinares-Lara (Universidad Rey Juan Carlos) and Cristina Olarte-Pascual (Universidad de La Rioja), in cooperation with Professor Kiyoshi Murata, from Meiji University in Tokyo, believe society is ready for this melding of (hu)man and machine.

The Spanish academics’ report "Assessing the acceptance of technological implants (the cyborg): Evidences and challenges" has just been released in the scientific journal Computers in Human Behavior. The report shows a significant proportion of those surveyed are comfortable with the coming cyborg modifications. The group are also collaborating with other academics across the world, including Professor Kiyoshi Murata, for a comparative cross-cultural study roundtable at the 2017 ETHICOMP conference this summer in Turin, Italy.

Quick background: There are already the accepted medical examples: Cochlear implants, pacemakers, cardioverter defibrillators, catheters and heart valves, as well as those that incorporate technology into the body through sensory prostheses: exoskeletons, neuroprostheses, and deep brain stimulation. Then there’s the underground biohacking and transhumanism movement, with Amal Graafstra and his double RFID implants as a notable exponent (you can see him in demo mode here).

A View from Jerry Kaplan AI’s PR Problem

Jerry Kaplan

HBO’s Westworld features a common plot device—synthetic hosts rising up against their callous human creators. But is it more than just a plot twist? After all, smart people like Bill Gates and Steven Hawking have warned that artificial intelligence may be on a dangerous path and could threaten the survival of the human race.

They’re not the only ones worried. The Committee on Legal Affairs of the European Parliament recently issued a report calling on the EU to require intelligent robots to be registered, in part so their ethical character can be assessed. The “Stop Killer Robots” movement, opposed to the use of so-called autonomous weapons in war, is influencing both United Nations and U.S. Defense Department policy.

Artificial intelligence, it seems, has a PR problem. While it’s true that today’s machines can credibly perform many tasks (playing chess, driving cars) that were once reserved for humans, that doesn’t mean that the machines are growing more intelligent and ambitious. It just means they’re doing what we built them to do.

The robots may be coming, but they are not coming for us—because there is no “they.” Machines are not people, and there’s no persuasive evidence that they are on a path toward sentience.

The case for digital reinvention

By Jacques Bughin, Laura LaBerge, and Anette Mellbye

Digital technology, despite its seeming ubiquity, has only begun to penetrate industries. As it continues its advance, the implications for revenues, profits, and opportunities will be dramatic. 

As new markets emerge, profit pools shift, and digital technologies pervade more of everyday life, it’s easy to assume that the economy’s digitization is already far advanced. According to our latest research, however, the forces of digital have yet to become fully mainstream. On average, industries are less than 40 percent digitized, despite the relatively deep penetration of these technologies in media, retail, and high tech. 

As digitization penetrates more fully, it will dampen revenue and profit growth for some, particularly the bottom quartile of companies, according to our research, while the top quartile captures disproportionate gains. Bold, tightly integrated digital strategies will be the biggest differentiator between companies that win and companies that don’t, and the biggest payouts will go to those that initiate digital disruptions. Fast-followers with operational excellence and superior organizational health won’t be far behind.