What does the future hold for human augmentation?

Human augmentation, once the preserve of science fiction is quickly entering normal life – how will this change us?

Kaspersky Next 2020

Recently Tesla and Space-X entrepreneur Elon Musk revealed a “brain-chip” which will hopefully allow paralysed people to walk and talk. He said, “”I think it’s going to blow your minds – It’s like a Fitbit in your skull with tiny wires.”
That brought the realisation to many people that human augmentation is fast approaching – often seen in science fiction films such as Ghost In The Shell, Chappie or Alita: Battle Angel, this futuristic technology is quickly becoming possible. In addition, whilst new developments in augmentation continue, new research from Kaspersky highlights the growing desire among people to become enhanced or augmented.

Social media generation

But why has this rationale changed so rapidly? Experts think that social media and digital filters that most smart cameras and apps have created a “modification generation”, which is normalising the idea of augmenting and changing our bodies. Indeed, around two-thirds of those who were asked, said they’d be “happy with augmenting their bodies”.
It’s not all good news however, many people express concern that these new tools and augmentations could be hacked or attacked – indeed, 9 out of 10 people questions, felt they were concerned about the risk to the devices they attach to themselves being hacked – something that is a very real possibility if it’s connected to the internet. Others are concerned that these new fancy tools will be the preserve of the rich and famous.

So what lies ahead for humanity and augmentation? It’s a tough question, with many moral and ethical roadblocks and hurdles – that is also something that a team of experts intend to discuss at this year’s Kaspersky NEXT event.

During the Great Human Augmentation Debate, Marco Preuss, David Jacoby from Kaspersky and special guests Zoltan Istvan and Julian Savulescu will examine these questions as well as what lies ahead for human augmentation. Follow the event on Twitter with #KNEXT20