The view we have on cyber security has changed several times over the course of the last two decades. One of the first sources of threats were floppy drives, but today the primary source of threat is the global network of computers – the Internet.
When we say the Internet, we mean the whole network and all the technologies that power it and are accessible to the users. Today, mobile platforms are expanding exponentially, along with the cloud-based business software app market. And all that was followed by an increase in cyber security measures.
Does this trend of exponentially increasing cyber security measures come as a surprise at all? In order to attract more customers, enterprise app vendors must have to top notch security implemented on their servers and networks. Cyber security companies have recognized this as an opportunity to develop and deliver all sorts of encryptions, fingerprint scanners, biometric chips, etc.
Antivirus and firewall vendors have also done the same. By aligning their product to be more cloud-protective, they have brought them close to the market and made them more appealing for the customers, who have too much to loose if their client data gets breached or deleted. Doing everything to protect your business online was never as important as it is today.
The emerging technologies have already made an impact on users and governments all across the globe. For instance, the European Union is preparing the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). GDPR will enforce companies to conform to a set of rules regarding how they process, store and secure the personal data.
At the same time, afraid of another ransomware attack, cyber security professionals highly recommend that people make regular backups of their data. It seems that a good old backup is the best cyber security measure an industry worth billions of dollars has to offer.
Another measure put in place by professionals is a good business continuity plan, or in other words, what to do if your establishment becomes a victim of cyber attack in order to stay in business. The rule of thumb to follow here is to be honest, give full disclosure as soon as possible, don’t misdirect anyone who is a potential victim and patch vulnerabilities as soon as you discover them.
A big change in the way we see cyber security comes to us thanks to the Red Canary, a cyber security company. Now, why is this company different than any other cyber security firm out there? Because they are the first company that decided to use human intelligence in combination with machine learning to develop a cyber security threat detection and response software.
The co-founders of this establishment have unanimously come to an agreement that a completely new approach is needed when it comes to fighting the attacks that result in data breaches. According to their reasoning, the approach that we are using at the moment is ineffective. Instead of being locked into a reactive mindset, it is better and more secure to shift to a proactive one.
Fingerprint scanners and bionic chips are not going to protect us from cyber breaches – machine learning and proactivity will. How does this work? In order to leverage machine learning, you have to feed it with copious amounts of data.
This will be achieved by installing the software on all devices used in any organization. This software collects highly detailed data and sends it to the cloud. While in the cloud, it is closely inspected by bots powered by very sophisticated algorithms. By tracking general behaviour patterns of malicious software and attackers, these systems are able to prevent attacks from happening.
When the threat has been identified, the software notifies a team of human agents in charge of hunting malware and breachers, and inoculating the system.
Machine learning and AI are the two most prominent technologies of the 21st century. We are glad to see that there is a serious effort in the cyber security community to implement big data, machine learning and AI in a cyber security solution.
Unfortunately, this industry faces many challenges, e.g. there is a serious shortage of experts on the market and firms are forced to outsource to third party companies or individuals.