AI Yields Security Benefits, Not Without Problems

Artificial intelligence (AI) is expected to grow in the cybersecurity marketplace, likely to $18.2 billion by 2023, according to a report from P&S Market Research. AI is still only in its nascent stages, though, and the technologies present several obstacles that organizations must overcome, according to a new white paper by Osterman Research.

In a survey sponsored by ProtectWise, Osterman Research learned that AI has penetrated the security operations center (SOC), but there are many challenges that stand in the way of AI being able to deliver on its promises.

The survey found that AI has already established a strong foothold, with 73% of respondents reporting that they have implemented security solutions with at least some aspect of AI. Most organizations said their top reasons for incorporating AI were to improve the efficiency of security staff members and to make alert investigations faster.

In addition, survey results concluded that 55% of IT executives are the strongest advocates for AI, while only 38% of AI’s strongest supporters identified as non-IT executives. That difference was evidenced in the reported inconsistencies from respondents who reflected on the results of their initial deployment of AI-enabled security products.

Participants confessed that AI-enabled security solutions have significantly more security alerts and false positives on a typical day, with 61% of respondents agreeing that creating and implementing rules is burdensome and 52% citing they have no plan to implement additional AI-enabled security solutions in the future.

More than half (61%) of all respondents said that AI doesn’t stop zero-days and advanced threats, 54% said it delivers inaccurate results and 42% said it’s difficult to use. Additionally, 71% said it’s expensive. While there is still progress that needs to be made, the survey found the future of AI has great potential.

“Our bottom line assessment is that AI is not yet 'there,' but offers the promise of improving the speed of processing alerts and false positives, particularly in organizations that receive massive numbers of both. Moreover, while the full potential of AI has yet to be realized, it holds the promise of seriously addressing the cybersecurity skills shortage – it may not be a 'silver bullet,' but it may be a silver-plated one,” the survey said.

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