How to Use Artificial Intelligence (AI) to Beef up Cybersecurity

How can AI help cybersecurity?

As data breaches and privacy incidents become more common than ever, cybersecurity is the top priority for businesses. Not to mention that they also have to adhere to the regulatory compliances meant to protect the privacy of customer data. In such circumstances, it becomes vital for them to look for foolproof measures to protect data and systems. In addition to the conventional best practices, they are exploring the immense strength of artificial intelligence technology to take cybersecurity to the next level. 

By integrating the technology into their current practices and initiatives, security professionals can strengthen organizational security further. This combination makes it possible to protect vulnerable data and networks from the sharpest of cyber attackers. In fact, a large number of businesses have already started embracing it specifically for this purpose. In this article, we’ll discuss some ways artificial intelligence can play a key role in beefing up the security function for organizations.

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Updating databases and detecting large scale movements

To start with, artificial intelligence (AI) can be leveraged for updating security databases. It can collect and analyze data from various records and logs. Further, this intelligent technology can unearth malware trends with an in-depth analysis of data across multiple channels. The best part is that such threats can be identified fast, even before they cause large-scale damage to businesses. With timely detection, cybersecurity experts get more time to establish preventive measures such as fixing flaws and bugs that could possibly be targeted by the malware.

Identifying unusual activity

AI has the potential to detect anomalies in user behavior patterns for the timely identification of unusual activity. AI algorithms can detect unusual activities that fall outside the standard behavioral patterns of the users. Further, they can flag the same as suspicious users or even block them. The activities can range from accessing Trade Data from an unknown IP to making large online purchases that are shipped to an unknown address (that the user has never used before). Even something as simple as a sudden change in the user’s typing speed can raise concern.

Detecting potential vulnerabilities

Besides uncovering abnormal user behavior and activity, AI can also help in. detecting potential vulnerabilities, bugs and security flaws. For instance, machine learning technology can be used to know about the transfer of untrusted data from an application. Some other common issues that AI can identify include injection SQL vulnerabilities and buffer overflow. Additionally, it can also detect human error reliably. This is important because a large number of data breaches are caused by employee breach. Timely detection and prevention of such errors can make all the difference. 

Ensuring threat prevention

As AI technology gets smarter than ever, it can do much more than detecting anomalies and vulnerabilities in systems and data. It can even automatically prevent the exploitation of these flaws. There is much that technology can do for preventing any problems from occurring. For example, it can be used for fixing coding errors that are responsible for vulnerabilities. It can also add extra firewalls if there is a need. 

Enabling appropriate response measures

While prevention works before malware actually enter the system, initiating response is important after it happens. AI can play an effective role in putting the appropriate response measures into action. Response measures include damage control, patching any security flaws and removal of the virus from the system. Further, it is vital to implement relevant protections to prevent malware from infecting the system again.

Fortifying network security

Strengthening the network security for organizations involves two steps. Firstly, there is a need to create a reliable security policy. Secondly, you have to figure out the network topography of the business. Typically, these activities are cumbersome and time-consuming. However, AI can expedite these processes to a significant extent. The technology facilitates these by keeping track of the network traffic patterns and analyzing them. Further, the insights so derived can be used for suggesting effective security policies. 

Facilitating key processes

Beyond the specific benefits for cybersecurity, AI can improve the key processes that involve online security in sectors like e-commerce and e-banking. A secure and robust transaction system matters a lot for these domains. AI ensures that the risk is minimized from every single transaction. Besides secure online payments, it can cut down the risk for credit card fraud. This is possible with the identification of abnormal activities (as mentioned before), such as the use of an unusual device or a transaction involving an unusual amount.

How can organizations implement AI in cybersecurity?

The value of AI for strengthening cybersecurity is now clear. Implementing a system that integrates the technology in the current security practices, therefore, should be a priority. Doing so, however, is easier said than done because it involves a lot of work. Essentially, you will need a clear roadmap to translate this vision into a reality. Here are the milestones that make the roadmap for implementation of AI in cybersecurity:

Create a data platform: To start with, you need to identify various sources from where data comes in for the business. Since there will be disparate sources, you will have to create a unified data platform with the aim to operationalize AI.

Select high impact use cases: It becomes important to segregate the high-impact use cases for AI implementation so that resource utilization is done smartly and effectively and benefits are maximized.  

Improve security management: The next step is to improve security management internally, which is best done by deploying the right measures and implementing best practices at all levels within the organization.

Collaborate externally: While there is a need to strengthen the cybersecurity within the organization, external collaboration is required to enhance threat intelligence.

Onboard and train the team: A key aspect of leveraging AI as a part of your cybersecurity initiative is having a trained team that can handle the setup. Onboard new resources and train the existing one to create a team you can trust.

Install governance: Once you have a system in place, it is vital to install governance because only consistent efforts ensure long-term results and improvement with this innovative approach.

The potential of AI for securing networks and data is huge and the opportunities it can unlock for businesses are immense. For this reason, it is something that organizations should not miss out because security matters the most and anything that makes it better is worth investing in. Even if the initiative involves a lot of work and careful planning, you must take all measures to put it in action. You will definitely see tangible results and extensive benefits for decades to come. 

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