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How Cloud Security is Enhanced by Artificial Intelligence
News overview

How Cloud Security is Enhanced by Artificial Intelligence

Security breaches in cloud environments are constantly increasing in frequency and severity, and standard cybersecurity protections are no longer enough. Thankfully, artificial intelligence (AI) can be used to enhance cloud security in ways that identify and remove threats before they can act.

More organizations are starting to use intelligent monitoring systems to protect their data in the cloud. Thanks to the proliferation of data breaches and massive fines, business owners can’t risk leaving anything to chance.

One security incident can destroy a company’s finances and reputation. However, AI-powered security tools can prevent this from happening.

How Artificial Intelligence Enhances Cloud Security

What are intelligent monitoring systems?

Science Direct defines an intelligent monitoring system as “a system that perceives complex processes, collects data on monitored areas, and, using intelligent tools, actively and independently supports the environment operations.”

There are many types of intelligent monitoring systems, and Multi-Agent System based Cloud Monitoring (MAS-CM) is one that shows some promise. This system prevents unauthorized tasks injection and modification, maximizes resource usage, and optimizes scheduling processes. This is all done in non-deterministic time intervals in order to prevent timing attacks on cloud environments.

Other AI-powered systems are designed to detect and stop threats before they can act. For example, machine learning is used to set a baseline for normal user behavior on a given network and the system will isolate any traffic that the system detects as unusual. This can be anything from users accessing the network from an unrecognized device or IP, users attempting to access directories above their set permissions, and when requests seem to come from a robot or virus.

Why AI is so efficient with security

The reason artificial intelligence is so efficient at detecting and stopping threats is mostly due to the vast amount of data the system can gather and analyze. Assessing potential malware attacks is far more reliable with more data because it allows for a deeper, broader understanding of what’s considered anomalies in traffic. For example, UEBA (user and entity behavior analytics) uses big data to identify normal and suspicious behavior on a given network.

AI not only processes larger amounts of data faster than humans, but AI tools can self-adjust based on that data. This can happen without manual input from humans once the tool learns what is considered the optimal end result. Another example of this is the next-generation firewall that authenticates traffic based on user context, content, and application. These firewalls are powered by inline machine learning, zero-day signatures, automated policy recommendations, and clear visibility.

With all the power of AI to prevent security threats, you might be wondering how incidents are perpetually on the rise. Shouldn’t data breaches and attacks be declining now that we have such powerful tools? In theory, if all organizations used the latest in cloud security applications, the incident rate should drop. However, many businesses have yet to invest in cloud security, and those who do often fail to secure their systems properly.

Cloud security is a partnership between AI and humans

Although AI holds immense potential as a cybersecurity tool, security in cloud computing works according to the shared responsibility model. As long as this model is followed, AI-powered tools can be exceptionally effective.

For example, when organizations use third-party cloud service providers, like Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, and Google Cloud Platform, the type of service determines who is responsible for what form of security.

If organizations drop the ball on their end, even the best AI security application can’t prevent attacks. Attacks that slip by AI systems don’t usually reflect a weakness in artificial intelligence, but rather, a limitation caused by human error.

AI can create powerful cloud security solutions

Artificial intelligence has the potential to secure every cloud environment, but it’s not just a matter of installing applications. Each business needs the right hardware, software, and a strong security policy in place to remain secure. They also need to do their part in the shared responsibility model.

In other words, it’s humans that need to catch up to the capabilities of AI-powered security applications in order to secure cloud environments. When this happens, that’s when we’ll see the number of data breaches and attacks start to fall.

Until then, it’s up to each individual and business owner to secure their cloud environment to avoid becoming a statistic.

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