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AI and Machine Learning to Defend Against Cyberattacks


A new report from Wipro indicates that artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) are set to play a major defense role against increasingly sophisticated and complex cyberattacks. Nearly half of all worldwide cybersecurity related patents have been focused on using AI and ML over the past four years, according to the State of Cybersecurity report.

Wipro also found that nearly half of organizations queried are working to expand cognitive detection capabilities in an effort to defend against unknown attacks in their Security Operations Centers (SOCs). The research firm surveyed 194 global companies as well as 21 partner academic, institutional and technology organizations for the research.

“There is a significant shift in global trends like rapid innovation to mitigate evolving threats, strict data privacy regulations and rising concern about breaches," said Bhanumurthy B.M, president and chief operating officer of Wipro. “Security is ever changing and the report brings more focus, enablement, and accountability on executive management to stay updated. Our research not only focuses on what happened during the pandemic but also provides foresight toward future cyber strategies in a post-COVID world.”

The report uncovered a number of general trends in cybersecurity. Around 86 percent of all nation-state attacks were categorized as espionage, with 46 percent of them targeted at the private sector. Threat patterns have also emerged in the consumer and retail industries, with 47 percent of suspicious social media profiles and domains active in these sectors in 2019.

The coronavirus pandemic has only complicated matters, with 70 percent of organizations surveyed indicating that cyber hygiene was challenging to maintain during a period of record remote work. And 57 percent of companies said they had difficulties mitigating VPN and VDI risks. Implementing a zero trust architecture post-COVID was a priority for 87 percent of organizations, and the same amount said they also plan to scale up secure cloud migration.

Nearly half of organizations queried plan to add cognitive detection capabilities to their SOCs to defend against unknown attacks. And 65 percent perform log monitoring of Operation Technology (OT) and IoT devices as a control measure to mitigate rising OT risks.

When it comes to sharing information to fight against attacks, 57 percent said they would share only IoCs while 64 percent view reputation risks as a barrier against the sharing of information.

Looking toward the future, seven percent of global patents filed in the last four years in the cyber domain have related to 5G security. In the finance sector, 70 percent of enterprises said new regulations are pushing them to increase security budgets.

In the communications sector, 71 percent of those businesses queried consider cloud-hosting security risks a priority. In healthcare and life sciences, 83 percent of organizations believe endpoint cyber hygiene is a challenge. And 71 percent of them reported that breaches in peer companies have led them to increase their security budgets.

To find out more about how AI and machine learning are impacting cybersecurity and a host of other industries, TMC is hosting its Future of Work Expo from June 22-25, 2021, at the Miami Beach Convention Center. The event will examine how AI and machine learning are being used to combat cyberattacks and for a variety of other applications from customer service to network performance management and analytics.

Edited by Maurice Nagle
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