Addressing the assorted throngs at Oracle Open World 2017, Ellison said that the biggest threat to cyber security is data theft. “In cyber warfare, it’s our computers versus their [the bad guys’] computers. That’s why we are doing everything we possibly can to eliminate human intervention”, he said, referring to the Oracle 18C, “the world’s first and only fully automated database” which goes live in December. In cyber warfare, "it’s our computers versus their [the bad guys’] computers. That’s why we are doing everything we possibly can to eliminate human intervention”, he said.
“The key to winning in cyber warfare is to catch an attack at the reconnaissance stage, when someone is nosing around your system to steal your data”, Ellison said. “If it’s a commercial actor, they can sell your data to the dark web. If it’s a state actor, who knows what they can do”, he added, tapping into deepening anxieties about an increasingly connected world.
“Your database system has to immediately patch itself the moment a threat is detected.” The Oracle 18C is able to achieve this, since it “does not need a human being to schedule downtime” for maintenance, Ellison claimed. “In fact the 18C needs less than 30 minutes a year of planned downtime. This is a big deal; no one else does it”, he said, making repeated barbs at what he claimed were “ridiculous” efficiency promises made by comparable offerings from Amazon.
“If you eliminate human labour, you eliminate human error. It’s embarrassing for me to admit it, but my autopilot flies my plane much better than I do”, Ellison said.
“Database professionals are busy people. It’s not like they are sitting around looking for things to do!” he added, pre-empting criticism that Silicon Valley’s obsession with automation threatens jobs that currently employ thousands of humans.