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March 2017, Vol. 19, No. 2

AI or not, machine learning in cybersecurity advances

The logic around artificial intelligence is fuzzy. Some people might argue that the heuristic algorithms used in antivirus to recognize potential threats are artificial intelligence. Others got a glimmer of hope -- outside of the security field -- with the landmark success of AlphaGo. In 2016, the DeepMind software won four out of five matches of the complex Chinese Go board game when it out-strategized top professional player Lee Sedol. The win astounded viewers and saved Alphabet Group, which acquired the London-based DeepMind in 2014, a million dollars of prize money. While cognitive advances are clearly being made in numerous industries, information security -- which is in dire need of help -- remains a complex challenge. As companies promote AI and advanced machine learning in cybersecurity, CISOs need to ask some tough questions to get past the hype: Are these technologies bolted on to get investments as well as customers, or are they core to an innovative security platform that solves a business problem (too many alerts ...

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