Published on November 9, 2023, 6:11 am

The metaverse is a virtual world that has caught the attention of technology giants like Google, Meta, Microsoft, and Nvidia. With their investments, they aim to turn the concept of the metaverse into a reality. According to Rajesh Ranjan, partner at Everest Group, the metaverse holds both unlimited economic and social potential.

As enterprises explore ways to take advantage of the metaverse and its applications, they must also consider the increased risks it presents. These risks can affect employees, customers, and corporate assets, requiring organizations to address them proactively.

Ranjan emphasizes that trust and safety considerations should be at the forefront of business strategies in relation to the metaverse. While some best practices from today’s world can be adapted for the metaverse, there will also be unique scenarios and use cases that need careful attention.

To tackle these new challenges, collaboration among enterprises, policymakers, academia, and trust and safety service providers is crucial. This collaborative approach will help ensure that the metaverse becomes an immersive yet safe environment for users.

Although still in its early stages, the metaverse is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years. This growth opens up new possibilities for enterprises, including trade in digital assets like cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs), immersive marketing experiences, improved customer interactions, enhanced employee training programs, and live virtual events.

However, as the metaverse expands its reach, organizations will need to confront new risks related to trust and safety. These risks include issues such as abuse of virtual avatars or concerns around data privacy and user safety. Enterprises must develop risk mitigation policies that prioritize user protection and make the metaverse a secure space.

A report titled “Taming the Hydra: Trust & Safety in the Metaverse” provides risk mitigation strategies for trust and safety challenges present in the metaverse. These strategies cover areas such as preventing abuse of virtual avatars (e.g., invasion of personal space, harassment), safeguarding data privacy and user safety, protecting virtual assets from financial crimes and identity theft, ensuring the well-being of content moderators exposed to prolonged VR headset usage, and addressing regulatory ambiguities associated with ownership, data privacy, and user interactions.

As enterprises increasingly outsource trust and safety services to keep up with user-generated content growth, the market for these services is also expected to surge. The trust and safety services segment of the Business Process Services market is projected to reach US$15-20 billion by 2024. There is anticipated growth of 35-38% through 2024, followed by even stronger acceleration at 60-68% beyond that period as technology and infrastructure advance.

Within this dynamic market, trust and safety service providers can leverage their expertise to help enterprises develop risk mitigation strategies proactively. As the metaverse trust and safety market expands, it will attract new service providers, foster specialization in the field, and facilitate ecosystem partnerships. These partnerships will address the complex needs of policy advisory, technological expertise, process acumen, and localization required for the evolving metaverse.

In conclusion, while the metaverse offers immense economic and social potential for enterprises, it also introduces new risks related to trust and safety. By adopting a collaborative approach among various stakeholders and leveraging the expertise of trust and safety service providers, organizations can navigate these risks effectively. With proper risk mitigation strategies in place, they can harness the full potential of the metaverse as an immersive yet safe environment for users.

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