Generation 2.0 at Work Generation 2.0 at Work

technologist, doesn't think drastic changes will be noticeable for awhile, maybe not until the post-Millennial generation grows up. But Millennials are coming, and he even has a prediction in mind.

"I think there's going to be a lot of changes, especially to Web design and the integration of instant messaging into pretty much every platform," Clapper said. He envisions an integrated instant messaging solution that interfaces with various platforms and applications on and off the Web.

Bradley doesn't think Millennials pose more of an IT threat than other ages do, and Clapper said conscientious younger workers won't exploit their Web 2.0 proficiency at the employer's expense.

What can cautious CIOs do to encourage Millennials to be more security-oriented on the job? "The approach to leveraging the Millennials and mitigating these types of risks is teaching," Kapuria said.

Kapuria thinks coaching younger employees on the security environment as it relates to Web 2.0 and existing risks might be a better approach than leaving things to IT policy alone.

Ross agrees that training all employees as security officers would also mitigate risk. He referred to this approach as "part of the most modern way of thinking about security."

Although the Symantec study indicates that Millennials use Web 2.0 applications frequently at work, time will tell if their activity causes rampant security breaches in government. CIOs will have to wait for horror stories - and success stories - of how their contemporaries deal with this situation and how prevalent the threat is.

"This is an emerging area, so there's not a big repository of success stories yet," said Kapuria. He knows of organizations with strategies in place to harness the Millennial generation and what they can do, and it has a lot to do with building an atmosphere of culture and education. "Logic is a big tool with this generation, and sharing why we have to do certain things is important," Kapuria said.

Hilton Collins, Staff Writer Hilton Collins  | 

Hilton Collins is a former staff writer for Government Technology and Emergency Management magazines.