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What impact is AI having on cybersecurity?

Techopedia has launched a new report that looks at the impact AI technology has had on the Cybersecurity industry, looking at how it’s been a help and a hinderance to businesses, what cybersecurity professionals think about it, and advice for protection in 2024.

A new report about the impact of AI on the cybersecurity industry, with 69% of businesses stating that AI in Cybersecurity is needed due to the threat amounts that human analysts are unable to deal with.

The report looks into the impact AI has had on cybercrime, speaking with AI and Cybersecurity experts to see how it’s being used against and to protect businesses, and highlights key statistical insights.

Breaches that affected organisations with fully integrated security AI solutions cost them $1.8 million less on average than businesses without them, and take 100 days less to identify.

This is for three key reasons – enhancing threat and phishing detection, rapidly analysing incidents and finding solutions, and creating threat simulations to predict possible cyber-attacks. As a result, 95% of businesses are adopting an increasingly proactive, rather than reactive, approach to cybersecurity.

Dr Robert Johns, data analyst at Hackr, stated: “By analyzing petabytes of data in real time, AI systems can spot anomalies that human analysts might overlook: giving security teams an early warning system to get ahead of emerging issues. AI also helps lighten the load by automating routine security tasks. In one project, AI sifted through firewall and IDS logs, finding 900 daily alerts we likely would have missed due to fatigue. This shows how AI strengthens defenses by connecting the dots across multiple, diverse sources of information.”

The rate that AI is being implemented means the AI Cybersecurity market is expected to reach more than $133 billion by 2030.

Its impact has also been a huge issue in the Cybersecurity industry. Hackers using AI have fuelled a huge rise in cybercrime, expected to reach a massive $9.22 trillion cost to internet users in 2024.

The vast majority (85%) of cybersecurity professionals blame AI, after seeing a 75% rise of cybercrime in 2023. Almost half (46%) of those same respondents believe generative AI will leave organizations more vulnerable to cyber attacks than they were before AI.

This rise is for these key reasons: AI increases the speed and volume of attacks, it adapts to specific defences, and it creates more sophisticated, personalised attacks.

Mihoko Matsubara, Chief Cybersecurity Strategist at NTT Corporation, explains: Malicious actors will use AI to continue to accelerate malware, and to identify targets, software, and weaknesses to exploit.”

Techopedia editor – Nick Francis – has this to say on the research: “AI has exploded in popularity in the last year, with users employing them for every day tasks from automating data gathering to detailed research. Although incredibly useful, it’s clear that it can also be directed to automate expansive and expensive cyber-attacks. Organisations and users have to be more aware than ever before to not only the same threats, but updated versions that may be using AI to creatively customise to targets more. User education, updated systems, and protective programs have to be used and maintained to stand a chance against these new threats.”

In regards to security measures internet users and businesses can take in 2024, Techopedia put the question to five popular AI platforms that had these useful insights:

  1. Education Around New Hacking Methods: “Stay informed about the latest cybersecurity trends and threats,” encouraged ChatGPT. “Educate family members, especially children and the elderly, as they can be more vulnerable to certain types of scams.”
  2. Creating Strong, Unique Passwords: three of the AIs – ChatGPT, Claude, and Llama – suggested using a password manager.
  3. Implementing Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): as ChatGPT explains, MFA “adds an extra layer of security beyond a password, typically involving something you know (a password), something you have (a phone or security key), or something you are (biometric verification).”
  4. Protecting Your Home Network: AI platform Claude emphasized the importance of a VPN to prevent “snooping or eavesdropping” – or from being, as Llama puts it, “intercepted or accessed by unauthorized parties”.
  5. Keeping Software Updated: ChatGPT, Claude, and Llama all raised good points about installing – and updating – robust antivirus and anti-malware solutions.

*Report from Techopedia

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