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Will AI Startups Revolutionize Cyber Security?

There is no doubt that the market for AI will flourish and we can expect to see disruption from India.

Artificial Intelligence is fast becoming the go-to technology across sectors like IT, Retail, Healthcare, HR, Banking and Finance, Automobile, Gaming and more. Among dedicated AI-only Indian start-ups, 23% are working on providing solutions to multiple industries, 15% are in e-commerce, 12% in healthcare, 11% in education, 10% in financial services, and the rest in fields such as retail and logistics, according to a 2017 report by Kalaari Capital.

In a report from CB Insights, over 550 startups using AI as a core part of their products, raised $5 billion in funding in 2016. Since 2012, deals involving AI startups have been on the rise, and 2016 was a record year for startups globally. India ranks fifth on the list of AI deals closed in 2016 at 3.5 percent.

Needless to say, investor interest in AI startups are at an all time high. In a recent report, Venture Scanner has listed 1500 AI start-ups with over $9.1 billion in total funding from 73 different countries. Startups are leveraging AI to enhance user experience, efficiency, predictability and accuracy in sectors like retails, ecommerce, healthcare, auto-making, HR and education in a big way. Apart from machine learning some of the other important focus areas where AI advances are happening include speech, natural language processing (NLP), computer vision and knowledge graphs.

AI is being put to work to help solve our cyber security crisis. Technological advancements come with their own downside, especially from a security standpoint. With so much of data being generated, stored and accessed over millions of networks everyday, data security has become a herculean task.

While the cyber security industry is in glaring need for great talent and techniques, sophisticated technology like AI is being looked upon as a double edged sword. The rise of AI-enabled cyber attacks is expected to cause an explosion of network penetrations, personal data thefts, and an epidemic-level spread of intelligent computer viruses. Ironically, our best hope to defend against AI-enabled hacking is by using AI.

Although, most AI applications in the cyber security industry are in experimental phase right now, experts are of the view that machine learning could help solve the most pressing cyber security challenges in the future. A recent study from analyst firm ABI Research estimates that machine learning in cybersecurity will enormously bolster spending in big data, intelligence and analytics, reaching as much as $96 billion (£71.9 billion) by 2021.

Experts are unravelling machine learning and AI techniques which will help us stay ahead of cyber criminals. With AI transforming an increasing number of industries there is a strong hope that it would transform the complex industry of cyber security too.


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