IT decision-makers believe AI is key to protect against cyber threats: report


Wednesday, 20 March, 2024

IT decision-makers believe AI is key to protect against cyber threats: report

According to new research from KnowBe4, 41% of IT decision-makers in Australia believe the use of AI (by deploying advanced threat detection, automated response mechanisms and predictive analytics) will help them protect their organisation from cyber attacks.

In recent research from KnowBe4, conducted by YouGov, more than 200 Australian IT decision-makers were asked to rank a list of common security practices in order of how beneficial they are to protecting their organisation. The most popular choices were network security measures such as implementing firewalls and intrusion detection systems (68%) and multi-factor authentication (64%). This was followed by regular software patching and updates (61%) while one in two ranked encryption of sensitive data (54%) and regular cybersecurity awareness training for employees (53%) within their top five.

Information sharing remains key with 42% ranking collaboration between organisations, businesses, law enforcement and government, but AI is emerging as an influential tool with 41% of IT decision-makers placing AI within their top five defence strategies.

“There has been a lot of discussion about the new cyber threats that AI is enabling but it’s great to see the understanding of the benefits AI can also bring to keeping organisations secure,” said David Bochsler, VP of sales APAC at KnowBe4. “The reality is there is no easy solution for organisations when it comes to protecting against cyber threats and best practice requires a mix of the practices and solutions available, alongside a robust cybersecurity awareness training program for employees.”

A call for information sharing

When asked specifically about sharing information and best practices about data breaches between organisations, businesses, law enforcement and the government, close to all (94%) of Australian IT decision-makers said they believe it would benefit their organisation.

When asked about how it could benefit their organisation, two in five think it would help in aiding early detection of potential threats and vulnerabilities or increasing overall awareness of cybersecurity issues among staff (43% respectively), facilitating the sharing of knowledge and lessons learned from others’ experiences (41%) and contributing to better risk mitigation strategies and practices (39%).

Over a third (36%) believe minimising the financial impact of potential data breaches would benefit their organisation, and three in 10 say facilitating collaboration with government agencies and law enforcement (31%), enhancing incident response capabilities and reducing response time (30%), providing benchmarks for industry cybersecurity standards and practices, or assisting in meeting regulatory compliance requirements more effectively (29% respectively) would be beneficial.

Furthermore, over one in five Australian IT decision-makers believe fostering collaborative defence strategies with other organisations (26%) or allowing access to anonymised incident data for analysis without revealing specific organisational details (23%) would benefit their organisation.

“There is definitely a consensus among Australian organisations that crowdsourcing information could be beneficial to preventing cyber risks in a multitude of different ways,” Bochsler continued. “Cyber threats are continuing to ramp up so we would urge the Australian industry and government leaders to consider how this could be introduced.”

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