Artificial intelligence (AI) is a thinking program that learns over time. Companies that utilize this technology can efficiently identify threats and discover solutions to counteract them. The AI can learn how to anticipate recognized cyber threats and provide countermeasures to attack and defend against them through time.
There are numerous ways AI can achieve these objectives, depending on what it is taught to learn.
Most common cyber threats
Recent cyber threats include the most common forms of cyberthreats that AI can counter, including phishing, text and email scams, ransomware, and malware.
Recent cybercrimes often occur through the infection of a single computer by one user in the company. For example, D-Box, a software company tied to the design and manufacture of entertainment and simulation industries, suffered a ransomware attack that took weeks to overcome. Fortunately, the company was able to fully recover with minimal damage.
Malware and phishing attacks usually involve a system or device penetrated through a text message, email, or link. Often, the cybercriminal imbeds code, a virus, or trojan in the link. Once the user clicks on the link, this computer will become infected. This infection may spread throughout the system and will spread further is connected to a network. If the infection does not spread, a dark web scan will reveal that the hacker gathers usernames, passwords, or sensitive company data that can hurt your company and expose it for sale on the dark web.
More common threats include the following:
- Man-in-the-Middle Attacks – The criminal will intercept information between two parties to spy on the company.
- Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) – attacks happen when the cybercriminal floods the server with requests that can cause a complete shutdown.
- Zero-Day Exploits – occur when a vulnerability exists in software, and the hacker exploits it before a fix can be made.
- DNS Tunnelling – DNS tunneling provides persistent access to the company or user through DNS traffic.
- Business Email Compromise – These attacks occur when the cybercriminal dupes someone with financial power in a company into pushing funds into a separate or external account.
- Cryptojacking – Crypto Jacking happens when the hacker takes over the user’s device to mine cryptocurrency.
- Password Attacks – These attacks happen when the malicious party cracks a password.
- Eavesdropping Attacks – Eavesdropping attacks occur when there is a vulnerable network connection that the other party can use to snoop on business or personal data.
These attacks can result in the direct theft of your company revenue, damage to your reputation, and the loss of valuable company secrets. AI can assist in mitigating the damage of these attacks.
How can AI boost cybersecurity?
There are four important ways that artificial intelligence can boost cybersecurity and protect a company:
- Identify and categorize threats early. By combining a list of all of the cyber threats, your organization has encountered to date and machine learning, AI can better understand and anticipate risks. This helps to create a more efficient system of dealing with cyber threats so that you can better detect and prevent them.
- Prevent fraud. AI is superior at detecting abnormalities and vulnerabilities. These capabilities allow it to instantly detect potentially fraudulent activity and take immediate action to protect your company.
- Build on previous knowledge. AI may need to perform a dark web scan to gather details involving stolen usernames, passwords, and other employee details. When attempting to invade your company, the cybercriminal usually uses these details to access your sensitive information for easier access. This scan can assist the AI in building a database to help in these attacks.
- Automate and regulate security processes. AI is much more efficient at reviewing massive amounts of data and applying knowledge than a human. This capability allows it to cancel, defend and attack threats in real-time.
AI can become the most important aspect of prevention and defense. With time and enough information, it can identify the information you need to stop threats before harming your business. You must ensure that AI has enough data to discover how best to seek methods and tactics to provide the best security possible.
Benefits of using AI
The multitude of benefits that artificial intelligence provides include the following:
1. AI learns over time
AI is possible through machine learning. The more information it is fed, the better it can discern information. It can learn the business’ behavior over time and recognize patterns in the data. This feature allows it to improve network security over time. It can detect when there are deviations from the standard activity and learn how to respond to them. While cybercriminals may adapt their tactics for subsequent attacks, they often use some similar traits in attacks. When this occurs, AI can detect these behaviors and block them faster.
2. AI identifies unknown threats
There is a massive shortage of people with the necessary IT skills to protect businesses from cyber threats. Even when a company has a dedicated IT team, they often tend to lag behind based on attacks that they have encountered in the past. AI is much more able to identify new threats a company faces. AI can map and stop unknown threats so that they do not cripple a company.
3. AI handles immense amounts of data
AI can sift through massive amounts of data in a fraction of the time it would take a human. Today, there are millions of data points swirling around the online world. The average business today has immense traffic, which means there is a lot of data that the business and its customers transfer. It is often not possible for a human team to go through all of this data quickly to recognize potential threats. However, AI does have this capability.
4. AI better manages vulnerabilities
Vulnerability management is essential to properly securing a network. A company needs to detect, identify, and prevent vulnerabilities before a cybercriminal can exploit them. AI can analyze and assess the efficiency of existing security infrastructure. Again, AI is much faster at accomplishing this task than human workers. It can identify weak points in networks and identify important security tasks.
5. AI provides a more secure ecosystem
The average business encounters a variety of cyberattacks regularly. While it is difficult for humans to determine which attack they should devote more time and resources to, AI can effectively guard against multiple attacks at the same time. It can also prioritize threats so that solutions are quickly developed to protect against them.
6. AI reduces human errors
Humans are fallible. Even with properly educated and trained cybersecurity personnel, you may still run into issues. Human workers may get bored or lazy. They may forget to handle an important security task that ultimately exposes your network. AI is not affected by these human factors. It can automate the process so that the same cybersecurity tasks are completed each day. It can check for cybersecurity threats and analyze your network to determine if there are any vulnerabilities.
7. AI accelerates the detection and response times for threats
The longer a cybercriminal has access to your data, the more harm they can cause. AI can quickly detect and respond to cyberthreats. This can ultimately mitigate any damage you suffer as a result of a cyber-attack.
8. AI uses authentication security
Many hackers use credential stuffing and brute force to try to gain access to a network. AI uses additional tools like facial recognition, biometric systems, and CAPTCHA to help prevent these intrusions.
Whether you worry about attacks from malware, phishing attempts, ransomware, or a serious network infection, artificial intelligence can help. It is vital to feed it as much information as possible, perform necessary scans through the dark web, and learn from its detections. When properly prepared, the AI can defend your network against even the most recent attacks. With the essential education of both AI and employees, you can defend your business from many forms of cybercrimes.
About the author:
David Lukić is an information privacy, security, and compliance consultant at IDstrong.com. His passion for making cybersecurity accessible and interesting has led David to share all the knowledge he has.