How BT is using AI to crack down on cyberattacks

Artificial intelligence is being used by BT’s researchers to fend off hackers.

Hackers are continually finding new and sophisticated ways to carry out cyberattacks, which keeps security analysts tasked with protecting us online incredibly challenging.

To help them, BT researchers at Adastral Park have developed artificial intelligence (AI) software that is already proving resourceful to analysts in the fight against cybercrime.

[Read more: ‘World-leading’ cyber security centre to open in London’s Olympic Park]

“AI is really important here and that’s because of the scale of the problem,” explained Alex Healing, chief researcher of visual analytics.

"The data is huge – we’ve got huge amounts of events over the network and we need AI to help us work out what’s most important, what’s most suspicious and that really focuses the analysts' attention.”

AI has already helped uncover software used to carry out attacks and pointed security analysts in the right direction.

“We actually found where this is being sold on the internet and then we used that information and the tooling to find where else it was being sold from,” Alex continued. “The AI really helped uncover and track what sort of criminal activity was going on.”

The technology has also been implemented into a virtual reality experience, providing security analysts with a huge virtual workspace.

“It’s a prototype at the moment but it’s really useful to get analysts fully immersed in their experience of analysing data, particularly important because they’ve got to have a lot of data from a lot of different places and rather than having dozens of different screens of on your desk this makes it very easy to configure and reconfigure massive workspaces.”

[Read more: Cyber attacks given new classifications by security agencies]

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