Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning , Next-Generation Technologies & Secure Development

Gen AI: Why Organizations Need to Weaponize the Weapon

Barracuda's Fleming Shi on the Democratization of AI for Security Practitioners
Fleming Shi, CTO, Barracuda

The democratization of AI capabilities has proved to be a double-edged sword - both enabling cyberattacks and defending against them. Fleming Shi, CTO at Barracuda, highlighted the potential of artificial intelligence to automate phishing attacks with unprecedented speed and efficiency.

See Also: The Anatomy of a Deepfake: What if You Can’t Trust Your Own Eyes and Ears?

But banning generative AI tools, he said, can do more harm than good. Organizations must learn to leverage AI capabilities, as "weaponizing the weapon that was used against you is the best way to use generative AI."

Generative AI also can assist in cybersecurity awareness training, helping to bridge the skills gap, Shi said. Organizations can use AI to correlate signals, identify threats and deploy countermeasures before attacks escalate. Yes, there are concerns surrounding the misuse of generative AI, but Shi said implementing closed-loop environments and responsible usage can provide a safer way to leverage its benefits.

"If you ask a system with tons of data behind it - be it a SIEM or SOAR, basically ingesting a lot of data around your environment - that you want a piece of information very fast ... now you can use actual English to describe what you want, and the code and query can be generated and that information can be pulled very quickly," he said.

In this video interview with Information Security Media Group at Black Hat USA 2023, Shi also discussed:

  • How AI is transforming the threat landscape;
  • How businesses can leverage generative AI and what they should consider before deploying AI;
  • Opportunities that AI holds for security teams.

Shi focuses on driving transformative technology solutions to support Barracuda's broad portfolio of cybersecurity products and services while nurturing product engineering teams to maximize the feature capabilities.

About the Author

Michael Novinson

Michael Novinson

Managing Editor, Business, ISMG

Novinson is responsible for covering the vendor and technology landscape. Prior to joining ISMG, he spent four and a half years covering all the major cybersecurity vendors at CRN, with a focus on their programs and offerings for IT service providers. He was recognized for his breaking news coverage of the August 2019 coordinated ransomware attack against local governments in Texas as well as for his continued reporting around the SolarWinds hack in late 2020 and early 2021.

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