Is AI a threat to cyber security?

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Last year it was reported that researchers in the US and China had managed to hack into users’ artificial intelligence (AI) systems without their knowledge. Hackers could dial phones and open websites while in command.

The hacked systems had been developed by tech giants such as Amazon, Apple and Google.

Since then, AI tools have only become more intelligent, begging the question: is AI a threat to cyber security?


What are the risks?

As AI systems are designed to make decisions in an automated way, should a system be compromised there is a risk that the hack could lie undetected for a long time, making it a valuable tool in the eyes of any cyber criminal.

CPO Magazine has reported that:

“AI could be used to build new, more effective malware that will be able to learn and adapt to launch further attacks. Such a development could be devastating for cyber security defences.”

In the past, malware attacks such as WannaCry in 2017 have crippled large organisations including the NHS and cost organisations around the world millions of pounds.


Harnessing the power of AI

Although AI has allowed hackers to grow their power, it can also benefit the cyber security world. Tech experts are in turn busy harnessing the power of AI to tackle the hackers.

Developers are now using machine learning and AI neural networks to adapt systems so that they can better anticipate the next steps taken by the cyber criminals.

CPO further reports that:

“The expected impact of these applications is so great that 25% of IT leaders consider security the top reason for adopting machine learning within their organisations.”

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To learn more about cyber security and how your business can stay protected from threats, visit the Cyber Essentials Online website.