Artificial Intelligence – The Future of Cybersecurity

The sheer number of cyber-attacks and threats present in today’s world is considerable. As the number of threats we face grows at an exponential rate it has become harder for cyber experts to keep up. According to the Verizon Data Report, more than seventy percent of attacks exploit known vulnerabilities with available patches. Once the vulnerabilities become known to the hackers they take advantage of them within minutes. With the number of threats growing, costing an average of $445 billion worldwide and the industry facing a shortage of 1.5 million experts, it is taking longer to detect an mitigate attacks. It has been reported that it can take about 146 days to fix vulnerabilities. Organizations are now looking towards more technologically advanced ways to detect those threats more efficiently and effectively.

 AI is the use of technology to program computers to perform tasks related to learning, planning, or problem solving more intelligently than the average human. AI is said to be the driving force of the fourth industrial revolution and will soon become merged as part of the cybersecurity sector. Narrative Science has said that by 2018, sixty-two percent of large enterprises will be using AI technologies.  AI technology can be used to protect confidential data and critical infrastructure from attackers with its ability to detect, prevent, and patch vulnerabilities. As the convergence of machine and device communication becomes more prevalent, AI will become a fundamental source to identify, mitigate, perform risk assessments, and remediate vulnerabilities that may arise.

The Internet of Thing (IoT) technologies like tablets, cell phones, Bluetooth devices, or smart phone devices, are integrating as a part of our everyday lives. IoT devices hold private, sensitive data and if exploited can affect organizations negatively. As technology advances, the threats organizations face are becoming more sophisticated and harder to detect, as hackers are finding new and smarter ways to disguise their trails. The use of artificial intelligence can be used in detecting these hidden threats. It is important for organizations to perform risk assessments, determining the real risks they face and the impact of those risks.  

Organizations AI can also be used in determining the appropriate steps and response to take in risk assessments. As the idea of AI technology morphs into a reality, startup firms are creating complex versions of AI with the ability to recognize patterns and prevent attacks before they happen. Smart technologies use have already detected and mitigated threats, including ransomware and zero-day attacks. AI based technology, like IBM’S recent development of Watson for Cyber Security, Amazon’s use of Havest.AI, or Google developing an AI-based system. The integration of AI technology in cybersecurity is only the beginning in tackling the complex security threats and will require the use of a multilayered approach of artificial intelligence and industry experts.