AI News, Addressing 2018

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Ahead of the industry's largest trade show in San Francisco, vendors are already touting AI-based solutions meant to address one of the industry's most pressing issues: a scarcity of workers qualified to defend against cyberattacks.

Cisco found that chief information security officers, also known as CISOs, 'are increasingly confident that migrating to the cloud will improve protection efforts, while apparently decreasing reliance on less proven technologies such as artificial intelligence.'

When Microsoft announced its Azure Sentinel offering this week, Ann Johnson, who heads Microsoft's cybersecurity solutions group, said in a blog post (https://blogs.microsoft.com/blog/2019/02/28/announcing-new-cloud-based-technology-to-empower-cyber-defenders/) that the AI security product is meant to address an projected shortage of about 3.5 million qualified cybersecurity workers by 2022, citing an estimate from research firm Cybersecurity Ventures.

Johnson said early adopters of Azure Sentinel have reported an up to 90% reduction of alert fatigue, where already stressed cybersecurity workers find themselves chasing what prove to be false alarms, and that threat hunting times which used to take hours have been reduced to seconds.

In addressing the use of automation to mitigate the growing number of cyberattacks amid personnel shortages, Palo Alto Chairman and Chief Executive Nikesh Arora said Tuesday that his customers report they get three to 10 times as many cybersecurity alerts than they were five years ago, and that they have to hire more people to analyze the alerts.

'In response to rising attacker capabilities, organizations world-wide need to continually raise their baseline security to avoid becoming unintentional collateral damage of attacks and easy targets of less-sophisticated hackers.'

Since cybersecurity earnings started rolling in for the season, kicked off by Juniper Networks Inc.'s (JNPR)disappointing earnings back in late January, (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/juniper-stock-falls-8-after-q4-sales-miss-cloud-weakness-2019-01-29) the ETFMG Prime Cyber Security ETF (HACK) has risen about 11% and the First Trust Nasdaq Cybersecurity (CIBR) has gained more than 12%, compared with a 6% advance in the S&P 500 index and an 8% gain in the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index .

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