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Digital transformation is ushering in a new era of connectivity in smart cities — the futuristic urban living that brings together a powerful trifecta of digital technologies, data and design thinking. The rewards are huge, as are the risks. Digital transformation can also be a gateway to new vulnerabilities around cyberattacks with impactful cascading consequences.

This Deloitte Insights article dives into key factors that influence cyber risks and suggested approaches for mitigating the risks.

  • Smart city ecosystems are comprised of three layers: the edge, the core, and the communication channel. These layers, are in many ways a new frontier, presenting challenges around protecting data exchanges, integrations between disparate systems and devices, and changing fluidly to address cyber threats.
  • Inconsistent security policies and procedures expose gaps in the smart city ecosystem, digital transformation must address the significant challenges caused by bringing together new technologies with legacy systems.
  • The web is bringing together public works services that have traditionally been separated (e.g., power, water, sewer, and more). Problems arise when integration and interconnectivity can have negative cascading-effects when there is a vulnerability or issue, such as the Emotet malware virus that struck Allentown, Pennsylvania in Feb. 2018.
  • Smart cities can proactively address many of the concerns listed above by taking a holistic approach that is tightly focused with key security objectives, such as confidentiality, integrity, availability, safety, and resiliency.
  • (1) Syncing smart city and cyber strategy, (2) formalizing cyber and data governance, and (3) building strategic partnerships to grow cyber capabilities, are three recommended approaches for balancing the opportunities with the potential for cyber risks.

I read the article mentioned above ( and thought it was interesting. While I am not offering an endorsement of a strategy, tactics, thoughts, service nor a company or author, the information was intellectually stimulating and thoughtful and worth a review.