With the rise of disruptive technologies, such as the internet, mobile cloud and artificial intelligence (AI), there has been a corresponding increase in cyber threats. As identity technology continues to evolve, industry leaders are emphasizing the need for integrated solutions and strong public-private partnerships to combat these growing threats.
Recently, ICS Pulse hit the road and went to the RSA Conference in San Francisco, a massive gathering for cybersecurity experts and businesses. The first day of the event featured several keynotes highlighting how the cybersecurity marketplace is evolving, with speakers such as Rohit Ghai, CEO of RSA, Lisa Monaco, deputy attorney general of the United States, and Chris Krebs, former director of the Cybersecurity Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA).
The looming identity crisis
In his keynote, The Looming Identity Crisis, Ghai emphasized AI’s transition from being just an application to becoming a platform capability. He discussed the evolution of identity technology and the core purpose of identity platforms, highlighting the importance of compliance, convenience and security. Ghai stressed that integrated solutions are far more effective than point solutions and that building layers from data will support the growing need for cybersecurity.
According to Ghai, AI is critical in managing the complex identity landscape and making zero trust work. He warned of the rise of “Bad AI,” which poses a significant threat when it comes to social engineering attacks, like phishing. He cited the old “Nigerian Prince” phishing attack, which was relatively easy to detect because of its poor grammar and inelegant execution. AI-enabled attacks look cleaner and are much harder to detect.
Without AI, identity becomes vulnerable to attacks and requires a more proactive, self-defense approach. Ghai said the next-gen protection platform is integrated at the data level, security-first and powered by AI. He also stressed the need for a synchronized set of security defenses and highlighted two major breakthroughs for the next era of cyber: cross-domain native telemetry and AI.
Extended detection and response (XDR) is expected to be a game-changer, as it can identify threats and take action in real time. Using AI to augment XDR, security teams can shorten investigation times and respond to threats instantly.
Combating evolving cyber threats
In their talk, Combating Evolving Cyber Threats: Leading With Disruption, Monaco and Krebs discussed the increasing threat of ransomware, noting a significant spike in attacks starting in 2017. They emphasized the need for proactive and disruptive approaches to cybersecurity, putting victims at the center of their approach. The Colonial Pipeline incident served as an example of effective collaboration between the victim and the government.
Monaco and Krebs emphasized the importance of public-private partnerships to address cyber threats. They cited the Kaseya and Colonial cases as examples of companies making tough decisions to come forward and work with the government, which benefited both national security and businesses. They stressed that collaboration and trust between victims and the government are critical in combating cyber threats.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) is also focusing on how adversaries and nation-states use and abuse disruptive technologies. There has been an increasing effort by nation-states to project power at home and abroad by targeting data sets, algorithms and software. To counter this, the DOJ launched the Disruptive Technology Strike Force in February, in collaboration with the Department of Commerce, creating 14 strike forces across the country.
The future of cybersecurity will be shaped by AI, integrated solutions and public-private partnerships. As cyber threats continue to evolve, strong collaboration and innovation will be crucial in protecting digital identities and ensuring a safer online environment for all.