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Generative AI will transform cybersecurity.

Edward Gately

December 13, 2023

20 Slides

Artificial intelligence (AI) is helping cybersecurity providers gain an upper hand against cyber crime while also giving cybercriminals additional advantages.

AI-powered solutions can sift through vast amounts of data to identify abnormal behavior and detect malicious activity, such as a new zero-day attack. In addition, AI can automate many security processes to improve SecOps.

Our latest CF20 is the second of a two-part series on providers doing business in the channel that are making the most of AI. This second part covers the impact of AI on cybersecurity providers.

The global AI in cybersecurity market is set to explode over the next several years, reaching nearly $155 billion by 2032. That’s according to Allied Market Research, which expects a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 23.6%. The AI in cybersecurity market generated $19.2 billion in 2022.

How Cybersecurity Providers Can Leverage AI

Martin Naydenov, senior industry analyst of cybersecurity at Frost and Sullivan, said there are many ways in which companies can leverage AI in cybersecurity. Some of the most effective use cases are threat detection and response, automated response, behavioral analysis and phishing detection.

Frost and Sullivan's Martin Naydenov

Other use cases include better security analytics and proactive security, such as application source code/API improvements, better network monitoring and more, he said.

“Ultimately, organizations are struggling with limited resources,” Naydenov said. “AI-enabled vendors empower organizations to improve their security posture significantly and can make a compelling business case that non-enabled vendors can’t. The incorporation of AI improves visibility, productivity and cost savings (possible reduction in security staff, delegating sources to more value-added tasks, eliminating point solutions, reducing total cost of ownership, etc.). These benefits will drive demand for AI-based security solutions.”

Generative AI Benefits Both Cybercriminals, Cybersecurity Providers

Matthew Ball, chief analyst at Canalys, which shares a parent company with Channel Futures (Informa), said for threat actors, generative AI presents significant opportunities to scale their existing operations, while enabling more to enter the ecosystem.

Canalys' Matthew Ball

“The use of the technology will create a surge in ransomware attacks, as threat actors exploit more software vulnerabilities and use stolen credentials from more successful phishing campaigns,” he said. “Generative AI can be trained to identify vulnerabilities in code repositories and websites, as well as suggest ways to exploit them. This will increase zero-day attacks.”

On the other hand, generative AI will transform cybersecurity by augmenting existing operations within organizations, Ball said.

"The use of the technology will create a paradigm shift within security operations centers (SOCs), in terms of onboarding and training analysts with digital twins, automating detection and response processes, prioritizing alerts, and scaling and optimizing expertise by enabling faster and more informed decisions from huge datasets within security information and event management (SIEM) systems,” he said. “Analysis of attacks will be shortened by using generators to reverse-engineer malicious scripts to ascertain the what, how and when of each incident. Automated threat intelligence and trending, vulnerability reports, auditing, software inventory management, attack-path prediction, detection of new malware variants, policy creation, log analysis, intrusion detection and identifying abnormal and high-risk behaviors are all possible benefits.”

ChatGPT Changes Everything

According to Forrester’s Top Cybersecurity Threats in 2023, defending against attacks on machine learning (ML) and AI was a niche discipline until recently.

“When ChatGPT burst on the scene, the idea of generative AI and large language model (LLM) deployments in the enterprise suddenly became a reality,” it said. “Use cases for adversaries to use AI also emerged, which will help them scale and wreak havoc in ways they simply could not prior to the emergence of these technologies.”

The overwhelming majority of organizations will not experience an attack that uses −or an attack that targets − AI in the near term, according to Forrester.

“Adversaries do not need that level of sophistication yet,” it said. “Since it is more likely organizations will source AI from a vendor rather than build their own, it is important to understand how these vendors will protect their AI models. Cybersecurity relies on ML and AI for detection to an extreme degree. The vendors you rely on to identify threats as early as possible might be susceptible, making this topic a significant priority to interrogate vendors about.”

Based on feedback from analysts and recent news reports, we’ve compiled a list, in no particular order, of 20 cybersecurity providers that are incorporating AI into their offerings. Our list in the slideshow above offers a mix of well-known providers as well as lesser-known companies that are making big strides in AI.

About the Author(s)

Edward Gately

Senior News Editor, Channel Futures

As news editor, Edward Gately covers cybersecurity, new channel programs and program changes, M&A and other IT channel trends. Prior to Informa, he spent 26 years as a newspaper journalist in Texas, Louisiana and Arizona.

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