The advent of Generative Artificial Intelligence(AI), is accelerating the threat landscape, making cybersecurity investments inevitable. IBM seeing spending on cybersecurity to increase in the coming years, said Monisha Oberoi, Partner and Director, Asia Pacific Cybersecurity Sales Lead, IBM Consulting

IBM is seeing the emergence of Gen AI introduce new risks and threats worldwide as multiple Gen AI tools are launched. Public acceptance of Gen AI is compelling businesses to adopt it, as not adopting it is no longer considered an option due to the significant risks associated with not doing so.

Indian businesses

“For Indian businesses, irrespective of size or scale, we’re noticing that cyber security is really at the heart of every digital transformation that they’re doing. As we move ahead, we see that the threat landscape, is now expanding and becoming larger. The critical reason for this evolution is the advent of AI,” Oberoi told businessline.

AI technology is currently at an inflection point with significant advancements and maturity. This has led to increased sophistication among attackers, who are now more targeted and quick in their attacks, with the time to launch attacks decreasing from months to minutes, she notes. 

In today’s rapidly changing environment, data security and privacy have become important for businesses facing competition and regulatory pressures. Safeguarding data, the most valuable asset, is crucial. She notes that according to an IBM report, there has been an increase of 71 per cent year on year in cyber-attacks, and most of them have been done by the most popular vector today, which is stolen or compromised credentials. 

Oberoi also said that IBM expects cybersecurity spending to only increase in the coming years. She said, “As far as spending is concerned, cybersecurity is a hyper growth area. With the advent of GenAI, it’s become even more so. The entire regulated market, such as BFSI, the requirement for cyber has only gone up higher. The appreciation at the board levels, and expectation by the regulatory bodies has gone up higher. As a result, funding or budgeting for cybersecurity, given it’s a board agenda today, is being definitely looked at. This is one of the areas where even if the budget doesn’t exist, CXOs or the board creates budgets.”

Commenting on how Generative AI can be used as a defense, Oberoi said, “The most immediate impact that GenAI  will have on cybersecurity defenses is substantially improving the productivity gains, both at a human level and at a programmatic or a technology level.”

As security analysts face challenges of spending significant time on investigating alerts and being slowed down by manual tasks, Generative AI can be a solution. Gen AI will help in automating repetitive security tasks, generating faster and sharper security content, and learning to create active responses, ultimately improving threat detection efficacy and response acceleration while alleviating workforce limitations like burnout and turnover.