By the time the clock reaches midnight tonight, the world will have created enough data to fill more than 150m laptop computers. That’s not the historic total so far, that’s the amount for just this one single day. Thomson Reuters alone collects a petabyte (1m gigabytes) of data a day.
It’s not just the quantity of data that is proliferating. Also on the rise is the volume and value of financial crime around the world. Some estimates put this at more than £2 trillion a year, or equivalent to the whole GDP of the United Kingdom. Such crime, be it bribery, fraud, corruption, or drug trafficking, causes incalculable suffering. All have been implicated in the financing of terrorism, human rights abuses, and environmental degradation.