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The Role of AI in Modern Cybersecurity: Beyond the Buzz

In today’s world, and in particular, the cybersecurity landscape, the buzzword is undoubtedly “AI.” We’re constantly discussing it because of its incredible ability to think, create, and adapt in real-time.

Artificial intelligence is going to be a key component of any modern security system as the volume and complexity of attacks continue to increase. In 2019, A10 introduced zero-day automated protection (ZAPR), which properly harnessed the power of AI and machine learning technologies. This application of AI has consistently proven to be effective in blocking attacks that were previously not known. AI continues to dominate the industry with its potential to adapt and counter continually evolving modern attack methods. At this time, AI’s capacity to classify and collect attack data has made its implementation within the threat intelligence subsector of cybersecurity a focal point.

In the context of cybersecurity, adaptability as a trait is invaluable. However, it is imperative not to underestimate the value of preparation (e.g., threat intelligence) or even the more advanced methods of gathering proper intelligence beforehand (e.g., AI-enhanced threat intelligence). To illustrate this phenomenon in simple terms, I will draw a parallel between this concept and an American basketball player in the NBA facing the Golden State Warriors. Before jumping in, it is important to note that threat intelligence can integrate artificial intelligence, but more on that later.

If you are about to take on the Golden State Warriors and you enter the game without doing any research, relying solely on your ability to adapt, I wish you the best of luck trying to stop Steph Curry. It is going to be a long night. If your ability to adapt on the fly is beyond exceptional, you might just survive. That said, the real game-changer is when you combine your natural adaptability with high-quality intel. Examples such as knowing Curry’s shooting habits, his favorite spots, the Warriors’ plays, and more can significantly boost your chances. This is why teams watch film of their opponent before a game.

In cybersecurity, AI-enhanced technologies play a similar role. They empower security devices to combat zero-day threats effectively. But, equipping technologies with a wealth of high-quality intelligence will give you a truly advanced security solution that can be specific, accurate, and perhaps even proactive. This is how you would prepare for advanced modern threats.

When you hear the term “threat intelligence” today, it is far from a small sector or just a feature bundled with security devices. Threat intelligence solutions are on the rise, with a predicted growth rate of over 135 percent through the end of the decade. This growth trend is, in part, related to AI. It is difficult to integrate AI technology in a way that actually works. However, experts are aligned in the belief that the level of AI technology today can be integrated into threat intelligence and augment the way threat intelligence works. With threat intelligence, AI is more than just fluff. It’s a genuine advancement of technology. Pay attention to this trend, because a more advanced threat intelligence platform could soon be on the horizon — one that is in-depth, precise, and proactive.

In both the NBA and cybersecurity, the ability to adapt is vital. However, combining that adaptability with thorough preparation and the right intel can make the difference between success and failure. Whether you’re guarding the three-point line or safeguarding your digital assets, the winning strategy lies in embracing both adaptability and intelligence.

Gary Wang
September 14, 2023

Gary Wang is a senior product marketing manager at A10 Networks. He provides a fresh perspective on the convoluted concepts in the security field. Read More