How AI enhances security for IoT environments

Artificial Intelligence plays a massive role in enhancing traditional cybersecurity
17 February 2021

More countries are ruling only humans, not AI machines, can be a patent inventor . (Photo by Andreas SOLARO / AFP)

  • The deeper we delve into the Internet Age, the more we end up turning to AI to raise improve our overall experience and output
  • Security experts consider AI to provide a water-tight security mechanism as it can collect and analyze information from previous attacks and provide a solution based on that data

With the proliferation of Internet of Things (IoT) devices entering network infrastructures over the last couple of years, cybercriminals have had the opportunity and capability to launch rapid, complex attacks. However, this modern threat landscape has been manageable by adding artificial intelligence (AI) to a security strategy.

The speed and complexity at which modern cyber threats take place, on top of the shortage in the current cybersecurity skill force, has made it absolutely necessary for the assistance of machine learning and other AI-based capabilities in order to detect, secure, and mitigate attacks.

“Cyber analysts are finding it increasingly difficult to effectively monitor current levels of data volume, velocity, and variety across firewalls,” CapGemini noted in a survey research report. The report also noted that traditional methods may no longer be effective: “Signature-based cybersecurity solutions are unlikely to deliver the requisite performance to detect new attack vectors.”

In addition to conventional security software’s limitations in IoT environments, CapGemini’s report revealed a weakness in the human element of cybersecurity. More than half of the 850 IT and OT executives who participated in the survey said that their cybersecurity analysts were “overwhelmed.” Technical professionals seem convinced that AI-enhanced security for their IoT environments is a requirement. 

In fact, In the CapGemini survey, 69% of respondents said they will not be able to respond to cyberattacks without AI aid.

How AI can help?

IoT implementations involve a variety of devices connecting to their networks and IoT security must grapple with scores of different devices, some old and some new, but each with its own operating systems and particular vulnerabilities. In short, the high degree of device heterogeneity makes IoT networks prime targets for hackers as they target weak links.

Among the major benefits that AI delivers include but not limited to: reporting existing vulnerabilities in real-time, big IoT data analytics, cyber-attack detection, and containment delivering threat alert. Security experts consider AI to provide a water-tight security mechanism as it collects and analyzes information from previous attacks and provides a solution based on this data. AI and even machine learning (ML) could continuously monitor the network and keep investigating previous attacks and even identify attacks that could similarly occur in the future. 

Basically, AI does not wait for an attack to happen but works on predicting an attack based on history and suggests solutions to fight the threat. Moreover, AI and ML work without human intervention, and hence the need for physical resources to monitor the network is not required 24×7. It even saves a lot of money for enterprises in hiring cybersecurity experts in large numbers.