This year 2020 will be one of Change and Challenge for the Claris FileMaker Community. It will require Commitment, Confidence, and Community Effort to see it to a successful conclusion. Herewith, in outline form, are some of the Challenges I foresee we will face:
1. We will need to develop a finer level of audit logging of Personally Identifiable Information (PII). Most logs currently focus on system level activity. A finer level of focus will assist in achieving compliance with various privacy requirements. Prompt response timelines for breaches will be an issue as well.
2. We will need to improve data level protection via encryption. The UI layer is insufficient for this purpose. But in the process of doing this, we must maintain system usability.
3. The practice of sending SMS text messages to mobile devices to achieve Two Factor Authentication (2FA) needs to end. It is inherently insecure, and there are better alternatives.
4. A better approach to 2FA is to adopt hardware tokens of various types. These can be made to work with the FileMaker Platform—indeed they already do so—using expanded oAuth Open ID Connect services.
5. We are going to need to adopt context—based authentication. Not just Who are you? and Are you who you say you are? But also, How do we know this? And from where are you seeking access, on what device, to what asset? This is not particularly easy to adopt; however, it can be done.
6. Mobile accessibility is due for a change. We are at the beginning of end of Wi-Fi. In 2020 we will begin to see adoption of what is called Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS). This is not to be confused with the old CB Radio from the 1970’s. Adoption of CBRS is likely the beginning of Connectivity as a Service.
7. We will begin increasingly to see the containerization of applications and services, e.g. FileMaker Server.
a. Unlike virtual machines, they don't need a full OS to be installed within the container.
b. Once the container has been created, it can easily be deployed to different servers. From a software lifecycle perspective this is a great help, as containers can quickly be copied to create environments for development, testing, integration, and production.
8. We need to adopt processes that facilitate how data owners can assure they exercise due diligence on cloud-hosted data. The owner is the responsible party here. And it is the owner who likely would suffer the bulk of the onus of any breach. In order to exercise this due diligence, data owners must expect and insist on transparency from hosting and PaaS providers about security processes including who does and does not have access to and knowledge of encryption keys. This will not be a straightforward process.
9. As we experience more and more instances of Machine Learning, we will need to be aware of, and to guard against, manipulation of the Training Data that underpins this process. Such data are susceptible to attack and to manipulation that poisons the data. Even a very small amount of such alteration can affect the machine learning process.
10. The Human Element has always been at the center of effective FileMaker Platform Security. That will become even more the case in 2020 and beyond as we move to Federated Identity Management and to Digital Transformation. The culture of any organization is a governing element for its success. We will have many challenges here properly to account for and to plan for the Human Element.
Steven H. Blackwell
Platinum Member Emeritus