Artificial Intelligence (AI), or machine learning, is changing the technological landscape. As computers “learn” and make smarter “decisions”, response times become faster and efficiency and productivity increase. In the world of cybersecurity, AI is playing a more active role in efforts to discover cyber attacks. But, in the wrong hands, can this type of technology do more harm than good? Here’s a look at the role of artificial intelligence in cybercrime.
Thwarting Cyber Attacks
Newer AI algorithms are very proficient at examining data traffic, access and transfer and identifying “outliers” or any abnormalities in data patterns. If something unusual is detected, the AI programs can take a deeper dive into the data to determine if there is a security breach in the system. Another way that AI is used in the prevention of cyber attacks is through a method called “supervised learning”. With this method, the algorithm is provided with a number of inputs and outputs and over time “learns” to detect threats by making judgements based on the data it sees or expects to see. For example, supervised learning may be used to detect advanced malware that is masquerading as a harmless piece of code.
In addition to being utilized as a tool in the prevention of cybercrime, AI is used throughout the world to streamline operations and alleviate demands on enterprise cybersecurity departments. IT security teams are overwhelmed by the growing number and complexity of cyber threats. Because machine learning is a scalable technology, it is often useful for supplementing the efforts of IT security personnel to monitor, detect and root out threats. When combined with human efforts, artificial intelligence can be utilized to bridge the gap in an organization’s cybersecurity workload.
A Threat In Its Own Right
On the flip side, experts suggest that AI can also be cause for concern in the field of cybersecurity. As the complexity of human knowledge and machine learning grows, so will the threats against enterprises. Artificial Intelligence could be leveraged for nefarious purposes, such as the creation of ever-evolving malware or algorithms designed to infiltrate computer networks. Several studies are currently underway to better understand the potential threats of AI in relation to cybercrime and the results are concerning. Potential threats may include:
- Theft of sensitive data from government and private organizations.
- Hacked and weaponized drones.
- Hacked and weaponized autonomous vehicles.
- Exploitation of networks to interrupt workflow or steal data.
- Social engineering attacks.
- Disruption in the political arena, such as “misinformation” campaigns.
A Complex Problem
Artificial intelligence presents a highly complex issue. Its role in the advancement of cybersecurity solutions could be tremendous, but some experts are urging that regulatory frameworks should be established now to help prevent AI-related threats in the future. Others believe that the benefits to cyber defense outweigh the potential threats.
Regardless of your organization’s stance on AI, having a solid game plan for preventing cyber attacks is key. From servers to smartphones, GoSilent’s technology protects all network endpoints from cyber attacks. Learn more about our easy-to-deploy endpoint security technology for enterprises.