We are all aware of the risks that come if your cyber security systems are not up to scratch, but could Artificial Intelligence be the answer or the enemy?
According to the Governments Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2021, four in ten organisations and a quarter of charities report having cyber security breaches or attacks in the past 12 months.
Personal data, confidential files and much more can be compromised with a security breach and that can cost your organisation. The average cost of a security breach for a medium to large organisation is £13,400. A security breach not only costs the organisation money, one in five reports losing money, data or other assets.
As time goes by, organisations are realising that cyber security is essential and the report suggests that the number of cyber-attacks and the severity of those attacks have shifted because more organisations have improved their cyber security measures; but is it enough?
This shift could potentially be linked to the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulations in 2018 as organisations were forced to ensure they were storing data securely, as well as several trends towards the use of cloud storage and backups.
It is no surprise that 77% of organisations say that cyber security is a huge priority, particularly when an attack or breach could cost an organisation thousands of pounds and potentially even some of their client base.
With cyber-attacks evolving at such a fast pace and some of them becoming so complex, it can be difficult to spot and monitor activity to identify potential attacks on our own. It has been suggested that the introduction of AI will be paramount in building automated security systems. This includes the use and understanding of natural language, face detection and automatic threat detection.
By introducing the use of AI-enabled threat detection systems, organisations will be able to predict new attacks and notify the relevant admins of potential data breaches, without relying on a person or team monitoring slight changes in patterns.
With the ever-evolving techniques used to cause a security breach whether, through phishing, trojan horses, spyware or any other forms, cyber security must move at an incredibly fast pace to prevent as many cyber-attacks as possible. It is not something many think about but, it is something that is vital to ensuring a safe space for the world of technology and its’ users so that we can continue to progress at the rate we are.
How is Artificial Intelligence going to help to prevent these cyber-attacks?
‘Artificial Intelligence techniques can be used to learn how to remove noise or unwanted data and to enable security experts to understand the cyber environment to detect abnormal activity.’
Essentially, by utilising artificial intelligence we can improve our cyber security as the AI can analyse larger amounts of data in a shorter space of time. This means that any slight changes in patterns will raise an alert and will notify a team member of a potential attack and therefore prevent more attacks from happening. Using AI more effectively and more often will allow for the development of existing systems and software in an appropriate manner to be used to reduce the number of cyber-attacks further.
So far there have been several success stories from using Artificial Intelligence based security systems; they are providing effective security standards and helping to develop better prevention and recovery strategies. Darktrace’s cyber security company claims that its automatic machine learning technology has identified 63,500 previously unknown threats on more than 5,000 networks. This includes zero-day exploits, internal threats and subtle or hidden attacks.
Is AI the answer to our cyber security prayers?
The real beauty of artificial intelligence is the amount of data it can analyse which means that it could help to pick up and identify unusual traffic in the network, including new potential threats that evolve within the industry. To the human eye many would miss those minute and subtle changes that could indicate a threat but software that automatically sifts through data can highlight the issue and raise it to the necessary team member.
Of course, there is the other side of the story where unfortunately AI is being used against us to develop smart malware and other attacks that will bypass the latest security protocols.
With a heavy focus on AI-supported solutions, there is a worry that this could lead to a false sense of security and allow for AI-supported attacks to break through the barrier. With cybersecurity, no matter what systems are in place, if someone or an organisation wants in, they may find a way around it at some point.
AI – Answer or Enemy?
For many, AI may be a longer-term answer to our cyber security challenges, but in the here and now, organisations can take sufficient steps to ensure their safety against malicious attacks. By implementing and updating your cyber security regularly you will help to deter any potential threats against your organisation, and it doesn’t have to be a daunting challenge.
At Stone, we can help guide you through all the necessary steps you need to take to protect your organisation. We are also offering our Vulnerability Assessment-as-a-Service, to help you understand and mitigate any potential threats. So, you have peace of mind and you can be protected today.