Canadian Security Magazine

Study: Cyber-attackers leveraging AI tools

Neil Sutton   


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According to “Cybersecurity in Focus 2024: Trends, Threats and Strategies,” a study sponsored by CDW Canada and conducted in cooperation with IDC Canada, the overall number of cyberattacks has decreased, but the number of events that escalate into cyberincidents is on the increase.

The study, which surveyed more than 700 IT security, risk and compliance professionals, indicates that adversaries are leveraging AI and machine learning in order to improve the effectiveness of their attacks. AI may be used to automate the process of finding vulnerabilities, as well as enhance phishing and social engineering tactics.

The most common AI concerns identified by survey respondents include:

  • giving cyberattackers the ability to automate the process of discovering and exploiting vulnerabilities (58 per cent)
  • identifying new attack vectors (50 per cent)
  • speeding up the development of new malware strains (42 per cent)

However, AI can also be a powerful tool working to the advantage of security personnel. “The rapid evolution of AI in the cybersecurity landscape demands a proactive approach to defend against evolving cyberthreats,” said Ivo Wiens, field CTO, cybersecurity, CDW Canada in a statement. “But this also goes both ways. By leveraging the power of AI in their cybersecurity investments, organizations can effectively stay ahead of emerging threats.”

AI can be used proactively to

  • predict threats based on historical data
  • enable security measures and automate threat detection and response
  • help organizations facing talent shortages by employing automation

The full report is available from CDW.

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