Thinking differently about security
Professor Ben Azvine, Head of Practice, Security Research & Innovation
There’s no doubt that cybercriminals are getting smarter. They’re becoming better organised, accelerating their use of new technology and turning their attention to new targets like city infrastructures and utility services.
The best weapon we have in our fight against these bad guys is innovation.
BT recognises this. And it’s why we are investing heavily in research and development to come up with robust solutions that secure our networks and help our customers do the same.
The research we do is focused on three main areas with the first of these being prevention.
Here, my team is working on building systems and virtual environments like cloud or IoT networks that are intrinsically very hard to break into.
We saw you coming
Another key area for us is detection and prediction. This is where we try to understand how things like AI, machine learning and big data analysis can help us to create sophisticated network ‘alarm systems’ that find anomalies and react to them. Or, even have the ability to predict threats before they happen.
In particular, we are looking to what we call ‘intelligence augmentation’ or IA where we combine the power of AI systems with the power of humans. This involves the use of interactive visualisation technologies that allow humans to assess, review and take the necessary action in a way that’s innovative. We call this the ‘Iron-man’ approach as opposed to the ‘Terminator’ approach to using AI.
Response is another big part of what we do. Currently, organisations are usually slow to respond to security breaches. If somebody breaches a network it can often take around 31 days before it gets dealt with.
However, innovations like automatic system patching or disruptive technologies like blockchain can help speed things up to help reduce or eliminate threats – and we’re exploring both.