Technology media highlights - March 2024

Technology media highlights - March 2024

The Briefing

25 March 2024
11 minute read
  Key highlights
  • Online multiplayer video games have become an increasingly popular target for hackers, presenting a new cybersecurity risk. 
  • SpaceX has made exciting new developments in rocket and satellite development, some of which could have global political implications. 
  • Nvidia’s development of AI computing chips has made it one of the most valuable companies in the tech industry. 
  • Tech companies are taking steps to prevent misinformation and unethical uses of AI in media and in the workplace. 
  • A proposed US bill would ban TikTok if not sold to a new parent company within six months. 

Popular video games are being targeted by hackers, highlighting the importance of cybersecurity in entertainment. 

On March 17th, a major esports event was targeted by hackers, prompting concerns about the safety of popular online gaming platforms. The attack in question happened during the Apex Legends Global Series Tournament, a competitive tournament with a $5 million prize pool. Two competitors were targeted by hackers in the middle of a livestream, prompting the game’s developers to postpone the North American finals indefinitely. 


Hacker Destroyer2009 quickly took credit for the attack. He claimed to have launched the attack “just for fun” and wanted to highlight a vulnerability in the game. The hacker also claimed that the hacks were not intended to be malicious and that he launched it entirely through the game, rather than hacking the players’ computers directly. 

Apex Legends is one of the most popular battle-royale shooter games on the web, reaching an average of over 200,000 daily users in the last month. This hack has prompted concerns from both esports competitors and casual players about the safety of the game. The game’s developer, Respawn, has taken steps to make the game more secure, announcing that they have already deployed the first security update and have more planned. 

Apex Legends isn’t the only game to have been targeted by hackers this month. Pokémon recently reset some users passwords after a hacking attempt. Very few accounts were actually compromised in the attack, but password resets were necessary to keep users safe online. Game studios like Insomniac Games and Ubisoft were also targeted at the end of 2023. This trend highlights the need for game studios to have strong security members, particularly when managing online multiplayer games. 



SpaceX has made progress with its third Starship launch but attracts ire from the Russian government due to new satellites. 

SpaceX, Elon Musk’s space technology company, recently conducted the third test launch for its Starship rocket. Starship is the largest rocket ever built and launched and is also widely considered to be the most innovative. During the test flight, the rocket reached orbital velocity for the first time. Starship also hit many other key milestones during this flight, including propellant transfer and opening the payload door. SpaceX opted to end the test after approximately 30 minutes. 


The company has also attracted attention for its recent government satellite work. Satellites from the US Missile Defense Agency and the US Space Force were recently launched into orbit on SpaceX’s Falcon 9. These satellites are designed to monitor hypersonic missile threats from other nations. During the same launch, SpaceX launched Starlink satellites to provide cell phone service to remote areas. 

Reports have also recently emerged about another contract between SpaceX and the US government to build a large network of spy satellites. These satellites could theoretically track targets on the ground and provide more comprehensive surveillance than current defense systems. After this report was released, Russia threatened to attack SpaceX’s existing Starlink satellite network in response. Chinese officials have also expressed concern about this new project. 

These announcements raise broader questions about the effects of public-private space partnerships on the global political landscape. SpaceX’s technology has the potential to significantly improve space exploration capabilities, but it could also exacerbate tensions between the US and other world powers.  



Nvidia continues to lead the charge in AI chip development. 

Nvidia is one of the world’s largest developers of computing hardware. The company has been making tech industry headlines recently due to its investment in AI computing chips. Nvidia is currently valued at nearly $2 trillion, making it one of the most valuable tech companies in the world. 


This month, Nvidia hosted the Nvidia GTC conference, one of the largest events in the AI industry. During the conference, Nvidia announced its newest AI computing chip, the Blackwell B200. This will be the most powerful AI chip on the market and will be a significant improvement on Nvidia’s existing offerings. The chip is designed to make AI computing more cost- and energy-efficient, which will be necessary as this technology evolves. Major tech companies like Amazon, Google, Meta, and Microsoft are expected to use this new chip. 

Nvidia also recently announced a partnership with SAP, an enterprise software company. This partnership will allow SAP customers to implement LLMs and other generative AI technology on a large scale. On top of that, Nvidia has also announced new generative AI microservices as part of its larger AI Enterprise program. 


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Ethical concerns are top of mind for tech companies exploring new AI use cases. 

The debate on the ethics of generative AI is ongoing as the technology grows more powerful and more widespread. AI-generated video content has recently improved leaps and bounds in quality with tools like OpenAI’s Sora and Runway AI’s Gen-2

In response to these developments, YouTube has recently released a new rule requiring creators to disclose AI-generated content. This rule will only apply to realistic AI-generated content, specifically content including the likeness of a real person, realistic scenes, or altered footage of a real event or place. Content creators who use AI to generate animated or fantastical scenes will not require the same disclosure. 


YouTube isn’t the only platform taking steps to prevent misleading AI content. Google also recently announced that their Gemini AI chatbot won’t be answering any questions related to the 2024 US election. OpenAI, Microsoft, and Perplexity AI have all taken steps to limit political misinformation, although concerns remain about the efficacy of these policies. In the United Kingdom, Deputy PM Oliver Dowden has proposed a global initiative to combat election-related AI misinformation. 

In addition to these concerns about using AI in media, there are also many ethical and legal concerns about the use of AI in business. Multiple research studies have uncovered racial biases in GPT-4 and other leading AI models. This could lead to bias in hiring and operations when used in a business context. Business leaders will need to take proactive steps to counteract this bias when using AI in their operations. 



The US government is considering a TikTok ban — but will they go through with it? 

A bill recently passed by the US House of Representatives would ban TikTok nationwide if the app does not separate from its parent company, ByteDance. The bill needs to pass in the US Senate in order to become law. The bill has support from both Republicans and Democrats in both chambers but appears less likely to pass in the Senate. 

Although TikTok operates out of the US and Singapore, ByteDance is based in China. As tensions have increased between the US and China, many lawmakers are concerned about the possibility of Chinese government influence on the popular social media platform. If the bill were to pass, ByteDance would need to sell TikTok within six months to an entity that does not have ties to a US foreign adversary. The bill would also give the US president the power to oversee this transfer of ownership. 


Many of the bill’s critics have expressed concerns about limitations of free speech should this bill pass. The TikTok app has sent push notifications to its users encouraging them to contact Congress about the bill, leading to a flood of calls from young users.  

This bill has the potential to affect other apps with ties to foreign governments. It’s unclear exactly what would qualify as ties to a foreign adversary under this legislation. It could also set a precedent for stricter regulation on other social media apps. Regulators in both the US and Europe have taken steps to reign in big tech companies. 

What to investigate further

Monitoring — and anticipating — trends is key for consultants in the tech industry, as new developments arise at breakneck speed.

Both individual consumers and businesses rely heavily on technology to stay connected to the world around them. This means that new technological developments have massive social and political consequences. Staying on the pulse of these trends will help tech companies develop products that resonate with their customers.


Factors to consider include: 

  • Cybersecurity in entertainment: Video games and other forms of digital entertainment are targets for hackers. How will this affect consumers’ willingness to engage with online entertainment?  
  • Social media restrictions: How would a TikTok ban in the US affect the social media landscape as a whole? What alternatives or replacements will emerge amid stricter regulations? 
  • Space and politics: As our capability for space exploration grows, how will the global political landscape change? 

Interested in launching a study on these topics? Reach out to Potloc today to jumpstart a market research study for your strategic projects. 

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