As artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning continue to advance, they have the potential to revolutionize many industries, including cybersecurity. Most people have only used AI so far to do their basic assignment, starting a mini war between student and teacher over plagiarism. However, these same technologies also have the potential to pose a significant threat to our digital security. Here’s how:
AI can be used to create malware that can evade traditional security measures by mimicking human behaviour. This means that it can bypass firewalls and antivirus software, making it more difficult to detect and stop. This proposes a problem for the average antivirus software provider, how will they be able to protect their consumers with a threat that is always adapting due to collected information?
The technology may be used to create more convincing phishing emails and social engineering attacks. This can make it harder for individuals and organizations to spot these types of attacks and protect themselves from them. Phishing is already an uneducated subject for people, with hundreds of thousand of people in older generations already being a victim. It could see a new wave of victims, aiming at a much more aware demographic due to how authentic some phishing emails could look.
The process of hacking looks likely to become more automated, allowing attackers to carry out more sophisticated and targeted attacks. With the ability to learn from past attacks and adapt to new security measures, AI-powered hackers can become more difficult to stop. This would mean companies would have to invest heavily in more security protocols, which already a lot of companies have out of date cyber security.
AI can be used to launch distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, which can overload servers and take down websites. With the ability to learn and adapt, AI-powered DDoS attacks can become more difficult to defend against. The rise in this type of attack has already grown without the power of AI, maybe more awareness will be brought to this as companies may see restless customers if their website is constantly down due to attacks.
AI-powered systems have the ability to monitor employee activities, which can help detect insider threats. However, the same technology can also be used by malicious insiders to cover their tracks and evade detection. Over lockdown we know employers were trying to see if employees were actually working, however will similar technology lead to the downfall of companies from the inside?
It’s important to note that AI is not this evil villain come to take our jobs and hack us all, but it can be used for malicious purposes. To lower the risk of AI-powered cyber threats, organizations and individuals must stay informed about the latest developments in AI and cybersecurity and take steps to protect themselves. This includes investing in advanced security measures, training employees on how to spot and avoid cyber threats and staying vigilant for new and emerging threats.
In conclusion, AI has the potential to revolutionize many industries, including cybersecurity. However, it also poses significant threats to our digital security. By understanding the risks and taking steps to protect ourselves, we can help ensure that the benefits of AI are realized while minimizing the potential for harm.