April 30, 2024 By Jonathan Reed 2 min read

Worried about ransomware? If so, it’s not surprising. According to the World Economic Forum, for large cyber losses (€1 million+), the number of cases in which data is exfiltrated is increasing, doubling from 40% in 2019 to almost 80% in 2022. And more recent activity is tracking even higher.

Meanwhile, other dangers are appearing on the horizon. For example, the 2024 IBM X-Force Threat Intelligence Index states that threat group investment is increasingly focused on generative AI attack tools.

Criminals have been using AI for some time now — for example, to assist with phishing email content creation. Also, groups have been using LLMs to help with basic scripting tasks, including file manipulation, data selection, regular expressions and multiprocessing, to potentially automate or optimize technical operations.

Like a chess match, organizations must think several moves ahead of their adversaries. One of these anticipatory moves can include cloud-based AI cybersecurity to help identify anomalies that might indicate the start of a cyberattack.

Recently, AI cybersecurity solutions have emerged that can detect anomalies like ransomware in less than 60 seconds. To help clients counter threats with earlier and more accurate detection, IBM has announced new AI-enhanced versions of the IBM FlashCore Module technology available inside the IBM Storage FlashSystem products and a new version of IBM Storage Defender software. These solutions will help security teams better detect and respond to attacks in the age of artificial intelligence.

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Traditional storage vs. AI threat detection

Immutable copies of data are used to protect data from corruption, such as ransomware attacks, accidental deletion, natural disasters and outages. These backups are also useful for helping organizations comply with data regulations.

Storage protection based on immutable copies of data is typically separated from production environments. These safeguarded copies cannot be modified or deleted by anyone and are only accessible by authorized administrators. This type of solution offers the cyber resiliency necessary to ensure immediate access to data recovery in response to ransomware attacks.

However, given the growing need for AI-ready ransomware security, new solutions are in demand. Unlike traditional storage arrays, systems like IBM FlashSystem leverage machine learning to monitor data patterns, looking for anomalous behaviors indicative of a cyber threat.

This new technology is designed to continuously monitor statistics gathered from every single I/O using machine learning models to detect anomalies like ransomware in less than a minute.

Advanced systems can use machine learning models to distinguish ransomware and malware from normal behavior. This dramatically accelerates threat detection and response, enabling organizations to take action and keep operating during an attack. For example, autonomous responses can trigger alerts or IT playbook activation that will minimize the impact of an attack against data.

AI-security threats

Cyber criminals are continuously developing AI-enhanced attack capabilities. AI-driven cyberattacks are quickly evolving that can pinpoint vulnerabilities, detect patterns and exploit weaknesses. Plus, AI’s efficiency and rapid data analysis can give hackers a tactical advantage over poorly equipped cyber defenses. Traditional cybersecurity methods are no longer enough to combat AI security threats as new tools evolve in real-time. The result is rapid intrusion and undetected ransomware deployment.

Moreover, there are also predictions about how LLMs and other generative AI tools will be offered as a paid service, like Ransomware-as-a-Service, to help attackers deploy their attacks more efficiently with less effort involved. This means the threat will grow into something even more dangerous and more proliferative.

The only response is to fight fire with fire. AI cybersecurity solutions, such as AI-enhanced versions of the IBM FlashCore Module technology, are designed to thwart the most dangerous attacks now — as well as the ones that security teams will face in the future.

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