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AI Appreciation Day - Industry Experts Share Their Outlook on Security and the Future of AI


AI Appreciation Day is a time to celebrate the many ways that artificial intelligence is making our lives better.  In the field of security, AI is being used to detect and prevent cyberattacks, to improve threat intelligence, and to automate security tasks.

In this article, we'll take a look at how industry experts are using AI to improve security and where things appear to be headed down the road.  We'll also explore some of the challenges that still need to be addressed before AI can be fully deployed in a security context.


Ramprakash Ramamoorthy, director of research at ManageEngine

"Artificial intelligence has had a significant impact on IT management, especially the cybersecurity domain. For instance, AI and machine learning enables a proactive threat response approach by identifying deviations in tracked metrics and consistently observing user and entity actions to detect internal threats early.

Businesses are increasingly relying on AI, but they must remain cautious. The same transformative cybersecurity capabilities that make AI indispensable to enterprises can also be exploited by cybercriminals. It's crucial for organizations to preemptively make appropriate technology investments and policy decisions. Businesses should arm their cybersecurity defenses with sophisticated threat intelligence systems and behavior-oriented analytics.

Collaboration is paramount, both internally and externally within the cybersecurity community, encompassing researchers, professionals, enterprises, and policymakers. Business leaders and their teams should be educated about the secure usage of generative AI systems."


Darron Makrokanis, Chief Revenue Officer, Xage Security

"In the cyber world, while AI is an asset to both adversaries and defenders, ultimately, I believe it will help tip the scales in favor of good. The ideal future state is one where AI-fueled cyber advancements protect the fabric of our society from attacks and threats of high consequence." 


Vinay Anand, CPO at NetSPI 

"Every new paradigm shift brings along a specific set of opportunities and challenges, and AI is no different. Abuse and misuse aside, AI has the potential to make cybersecurity issues more addressable in the long run and also help address the industry's daunting skills shortage. Through the right training models, AI will become a massive force multiplier and extract the tremendous value locked in data sitting in organizations for analysis. Currently, data is too complex and multiplying too rapidly, resulting in threats going undetected and unpatched. AI can get organizations the results they need faster and help find the needle in the haystack that will save organizations millions of dollars from an impending breach. A year from now, if you ask any security leader, they'll tell you that today's AI innovations have decisively changed the nature of how we do cybersecurity for the better."


Fran Rosch, CEO, ForgeRock

"At ForgeRock, we believe trustworthy AI can protect digital identities while simplifying everyone's access to the connected world. The powerful intelligence that comes with AI will unlock new opportunities by processing vast amounts of data faster, and more accurately so the decisions we make are smarter. But with any emerging technology, we must safeguard against its misuse and fight for balanced AI laws and protections to ensure our humanity is preserved. 

Now is the time to modernize our notion of trust and identity through the lens of AI threats like deep fakes and misinformation. This means finding new ways to use AI to deliver solutions that combat evolving threats to make the world a safer place. Together, we must resist the ‘gold rush' mentality that AI presents and focus on how to use it responsibly. We approach this new frontier with optimism and commit to explaining how we use AI and collaborating with industry partners to help create a future where access to the digital world is both unhindered and secure."


Dr. Vishal Sikka, CEO and founder, Vianai Systems

"There is great responsibility and care needed in developing and using AI. While it’s an incredibly powerful technology that can benefit our everyday lives, the risks associated with AI today cannot be understated: even users with the best of intentions could, with the right misstep, inadvertently cause harm with AI, so responsible AI development and deployment is critical.

We need to bring the benefits of AI to users, in ways that are human-centered and designed to amplify human capabilities - not replace them, nor endanger them. Ensuring humans are centered in the development, implementation, and use of AI tools paired with a robust framework for monitoring, diagnosing, improving and validating AI models will help to mitigate the risks and dangers inherent in these types of systems."


Dan O’Connell, Chief Ai Officer, Dialpad

"All new technology is divisive. But like it or hate it, AI is here to stay, meaning that organizations must take ethics into consideration when innovating to ensure that their AI tools are forces for good. Personally, I’m excited about what this technology means for the future – as long as we learn to embrace it and train it well. Ethics in AI is a common concern; how do we solve this puzzle? Most AI chatbots are tackling the ethics question by getting human feedback during their training on what types of responses might be inappropriate or offensive. The great risk at hand can be managed by ensuring that ethics are top of mind when innovating. Without that forethought, companies risk letting loose models into the public domain that perpetuate negative biases and discrimination. Your model will only be as socially and culturally inclusive as the data it’s trained on – and most of the data out from sources like Reddit and Wikipedia there is laden with historical human bias. To avoid this, companies must be using quality data that’s as representative as possible of a model’s users. While this may seem daunting, integrating ethics into your AI model from the start is doable with a knowledgeable team and clean, normalized data."


Fréderic Godin, Head of AI, Sinch Engage & Chatlayer

"At Sinch, we help brands create and upkeep natural language processing (NLP) AI chatbots trained on large language models (LLMs) both for internal use - like identifying information and generating suggested responses for live service agents - as well as external use, such as a customer service chatbot. For public-facing chatbots, in particular, AI hallucinations can have disastrous impacts on customer experience, brand loyalty and even a brand's reputation, so we've been proactive in mitigating hallucinations in our models. 

The issue of AI hallucinations is widespread in the industry, with no perfect solution. Ultimately, we'll need to rely on a combination of approaches to mitigate hallucinations, ensuring that AI systems and applications like chatbots are actually driving value for the businesses that deploy them - not causing headaches or damaging brand reputation. My team and I have developed a hybrid approach, relying on NLP and LLMs to predict user intent based on user inquiries and the context of a conversation. Focusing on user intent in this way prevents chatbots from spiraling off-topic or sharing misinformation, as the bot will be able to parse through typos or misused words by leaning on knowledge from previous customer interactions. And, when bots are affixed to brand-specific knowledge bases, they won't be pulling from the far reaches of the Internet to answer customer questions. 

As generative AI is implemented more and more regularly for customer communications, it will be crucial to keep bots in check with guardrails like these. Businesses look to these applications to maintain strong customer relationships without training their staff and/or resources, so they need to be reliable and trustworthy to be worth the investment."


Randall Ward, CEO and co-founder, Appfire

"Generative AI is a long-term technology advancement that is going to dramatically transform how business is conducted. For many businesses like ours, AI will reshape how we think about our business, from how we go to market, build products, and hire teams to how we interact with teams across the globe internally and externally and how we interact with vendors. 

Business leaders should look at their evolution with AI as a finely crafted symphony, not a brief solo performance. Sure there exists a degree of hesitancy around the implementation and utilization of AI-based solutions. However we've seen this before. Think about mobile computing, for example, and its transformative impact. There was a time when not everyone had a cell phone and phones weren't small computers, but now mobility is core to the way we live and work. AI will be the same way.

AI brings opportunity and value to organizations, customers and the world. There's great potential to create more software, employees will be empowered to grow their skill sets, and products will be safer, stronger and more reliable. Ultimately, we're heading towards an immersive AI world and we have to understand that this is going to be a lasting part of business forevermore." 


Carl Froggett, CIO, Deep Instinct

"AI has provided us with great potential to stop attacks, yet it also enables attackers. One of the biggest challenges we will face is getting away from always reacting to attack methods to meet the speed and sophistication of AI-based attacks.

We are seeing threat actors use adversarial AI, data poisoning of machine learning models, and leveraging LLMs like ChatGPT to launch attacks. Yet, there is good news as well. Fighting AI with AI is the way forward. Cybersecurity solutions natively built with deep learning models can be trained to prevent unknown threats before they materialize and land inside organizations, mitigating the volume, velocity, and constantly morphing AI-created attacks. Leaders looking to adapt their cybersecurity strategies with proactive solutions must start to focus on preventing threats over the status quo of the last ten years of assumed breaches.   

There is a pressing need to transition towards an adaptable and proactive approach to effectively combat the dynamic nature of cyber risks. The new era of AI is both exciting and terrifying at the same moment. For cybersecurity, organizations must examine and embrace how AI can be infused throughout the attack chain to combat potential cyber risks in the tremulous threat landscape."


Tobi Knaup, CEO, D2iQ

"The convergence of cloud, Kubernetes, and AI has given birth to next-generation intelligent infrastructure. An intelligent IT infrastructure powered by AI is the ideal platform for enabling AI workloads and unleashing innovation as it frees development teams' mundane and time-intensive infrastructure maintenance, allowing them to focus on the higher-value activities that spur true innovation. Besides, within an intelligent infrastructure, helpers like AI-driven chatbots and insights engines can also provide expert advice, troubleshooting, performance optimization, automated workflows, etc.

Another thing that AI is appreciated is how it can help companies to reduce costs and fill the skills gap. I believe that for companies that have put all their resources into the digital transformation race, the rapid adoption of AI is finally helping them see the benefits they've been waiting for. That's because AI can further amplify the effects of automation and centralized management in production environments, enabling the last hurdle of the developer experience. For example, enterprises can use AI to optimize automation workflows, help teams identify waste sources and solutions, and share recommendations to right-size team workloads. Also, by allowing low code, no code to be used in application development more practically, AI can help to eliminate the skill gaps and help companies modernize their IT infrastructure."


Vrushali Prasade, Co-founder & Co-CTO at Pixis

"In my opinion, AI is sometimes undervalued as a result of the overhype behind more publicly popular tools. The lack of proper education and awareness around AI has led the public to create false expectations. Consider AI as a heightened form of logical reasoning. Understanding its true power - what it can do, how it can be used, etc. - will help to better manage what should be feasible in terms of expectations or possibilities for projects. AI can only generate outcomes based on input by humans, which is why having the right intent to ensure correct application is crucial."


Dan LeBlanc, CEO at Daasity 

"AI has proven to impact our lives significantly already, but we're only just getting started. In 5 years, it will cut across more parts of the business beyond marketing copy and images - most likely in the customer service space, helping us track processes and finding out when there are issues with our processes.

We will start to see the need for fewer data engineers to manage data but will need more analysts to interpret the data.  We will find that we need fewer people to manage a process but more people to ensure the AI is working and more people to interpret the results to make our businesses more efficient."


Matt Durham, Head of Market Strategy at Digibee 

"There is some discourse within the developer communities as to whether AI can automate, or perhaps entirely eradicate, low-code development. The notion that AI can turn low-code into no-code implies that low-code is for non-developers. Many low-code platforms specifically serve professional coders. Low-code can be a way to attract non-technical (or substantially less technical) talent, but fundamentally low-code tools and platforms increase productivity and reduce errors, important realities for engineers. While AI can help boost low-code efforts, the idea that it can completely wipe out an entire method of development, and in turn take novice developers to pros, is fundamentally incorrect."


Veronica Lin, Head of User Experiences at Playsee

"AI continues to reshape the way we interact and connect with others online, where algorithms personalize content on social media and tailors it to find new creators, meet new contacts, and grow new communities. As a result of the pandemic, people have turned to social media as a means of finding local connections, and reconnecting with IRL experiences. Those community connections are thriving stronger than ever, and ever-evolving social media algorithms continue to bring people from all corners of the globe together online."


Logan Ensign, Chief Customer Officer of

"There is no doubt that AI is eating the consumer goods industry as a whole and that many of the tasks that occupy sales and supply chain professionals' time will be automated by AI in the near future. At our customers are already seeing their sales increase and their out-of-stocks drop as they're able to use AI to run predictive simulations that pinpoint where inventory levels and retail sales are most at risk and determine what action should be taken to preempt disruption." 


Eradj Khaidarov, Chief Technology Officer at IrisCX

"Generative AI is spearheading a new frontier of accessibility in customer experience. We're seeing emerging CX technologies using AI as a tool to support more people in a more efficient and streamlined manner, enabling greater access to the expert support they may be seeking. At IrisCX, we're using AI to create brief summaries after customer calls to ensure no details get lost in translation, and the most important or pressing aspects from that conversation are automatically highlighted for the expert's review post-call. Paired with a user-friendly interface, generative AI tools are helping eliminate barriers to entry (complicated registrations, external apps, etc.) for more positive customer experiences."


Kelly Coplin, Head of Product at Ceres Imaging

"Technological advancements in remote sensing and precision agriculture have generated massive, global datasets reflecting crop health and management practices. These datasets are the fuel that powers AI's application to the agricultural industry. By combining the outputs of AI with traditional techniques, agricultural businesses can optimize water, chemical, and fertilizer application efficiency while protecting crop yields and improving farm management. AI is playing a vital role in easing the global food crisis by helping agricultural businesses maximize productivity while improving the sustainability of their operations."


Nitzan Shaer, CEO and Co-founder of WEVO

"There is so much to be excited about AI and the opportunities it has to further innovation and creativity, but companies must use AI with caution. With the rapid development of AI we are seeing across all industries, from user research to healthcare, there is a great opportunity for this new technology to allow humans to focus on higher order, more engaging tasks that will accelerate productivity and provide happiness in work. AI will enable us to spend more time being human. It will allow us to focus our efforts on things that we actually enjoy, things that we get true delight from. However, the question remains, can companies leverage generative AI in a responsible and customer centered way?"


Anthony Deighton, General Manager of Data Products at Tamr

"Supervised AI combines the best of the machine with the best a human has to offer. AI is very good at resolving data and data entities at scale and with speed. And it doesn't get tired. This is a benefit, especially as data volumes continue to grow at a rapid pace. On the other hand, humans are very good at providing feedback and ensuring that the AI's results are accurate. And the more feedback they provide, the better the AI becomes. Another benefit of human involvement is trust. When humans participate in the process and have a hand in training the AI, they are more likely to trust the data. And when they trust the data, they are much more likely to use it in analytics and to drive decisions."   


Adriel Sanchez, CMO, WalkMe

"AI tools hold promise to significantly accelerate workforce productivity. When deployed properly, AI provides value for organizations by uncovering new data insights and freeing up employees to focus on high-value work while developing new skill sets. Digital Adoption Platforms (DAPs) provide customized guidance and automation across workflows and applications to enable individuals of varying degrees of comfort with technology to fully harness the technologies available to them. DAPs have the power to unlock the full potential of the new AI technologies taking workplaces by storm to achieve a level of productivity that can only be described as hyperproductivity."


Raghu Ravinutala, CEO & Co-founder,
"This AI Appreciation Day is more pertinent than any other, as generative AI has truly taken the spotlight in 2023. It becomes imperative for business leaders to recognize the vast potential of AI to enhance productivity, elevate user experiences, optimize costs, and drive overall revenue. However, the development of sophisticated algorithms alone is insufficient; we must prioritize transparency, accountability, and fairness in AI systems.
We need diverse voices at the table, fostering inclusive AI development that reflects the needs and perspectives of diverse populations. Moreover, we must prioritize ethical frameworks and regulations that guide the responsible deployment of AI. Privacy, security, and protection of personal data should be paramount, empowering individuals with control over their information. Interdisciplinary collaboration plays a pivotal role in this journey. The integration of AI with disciplines such as psychology, sociology, and philosophy allows us to explore its ethical implications, societal impacts, and human-centered design. By fostering collaborations among governments, industry, and academia, we ensure that AI becomes a force for good, augmenting human potential rather than supplanting it.
On this AI Appreciation Day, let us not only acknowledge the achievements of AI but also commit ourselves to actively nurturing an ecosystem that promotes equity, accessibility, and democratization. By doing so, we pave the way for an AI future that benefits all of humanity."

Sara Faatz, Director, Technology Relations Community, Progress

"The rise in popularity of generative AI among the general population – not just developers and data scientists – has led us to a technical renaissance that is transforming our global society in ways we cannot yet quantify. The applications and uses of AI for developers and DevOps teams are near limitless as we continue to expand our relationship with the technology. Beyond just practical uses, the implementation of AI into business, and life in general, is creating countless new job opportunities in machine learning, data management, software engineering and beyond. What’s more, it is opening new ways for us to learn, to consume information and to share.   
While AI presents many real and potential benefits, now more than ever we need to be mindful of the fact that the power of AI lives with the data models. We need to be vigilant about how those models are being trained, define acceptable use policies and even consider what regulations need to be in place in order to protect intellectual property and proprietary information. And as we discover new ways to leverage AI, as we stretch the boundaries of what is possible, we need to be mindful of the unintended consequences that technological disruptions bring and ensure we are using it for the greater good." 


Joe Regensburger VP, Research Engineering at Immuta

"The commercialization of AI has brought a host of promise and opportunity to the enterprise. Namely, the enablement of greater self-service without the need for specialized knowledge or domain expertise, such as knowing SQL or Python, is quite exciting. The potential is akin to that of how search engines enabled broader utilization of the internet. In regards to our [Immuta’s] realm of data security, two areas where AI can be very impactful: data discovery, the process of discovering and classifying sensitive data, and data fusion, the linking of information across many different systems and classifications – from identity management and cloud storage, to event monitoring, VPNs, and access control, etc. AI can streamline both of these processes significantly.

In order to realize these, and other, benefits, it’s important that we give careful consideration to data security as a foundational component of any AI or LLM implementation. The four “whats” and “hows” – what data is being used to train the LLM, how is the LLM being trained, what controls exist on deployed LLMs, and how can we assess the veracity of outputs – must be considered. These four processes are not independent, but should be considered as phases within the data security lifecycle of discovery of sensitive data, detection of how data is being utilized, securing access to needed users and purposes, and monitoring how controls are protecting sensitive information. This last component – assessing the veracity of outputs – is very important and one that could have detrimental impacts on society through the spread of misinformation if not addressed at the onset. Access controls can help address this challenge as they provide capabilities to set an intended scope of the model and also restrict activities that push on the edges of the defined scope. Therefore, by prioritizing data security and access control, we can harness the transformative power of AI and LLMs while safeguarding against the potential risks, ensuring a responsible future for this technology."


Corey Hynes, Executive Chairman at Skillable

"AI is transforming skills development and validation. AI is a force multiplier, reducing the number of things learners must know and retain while enabling authors and creators to deliver better content in less time. Demonstrating you can ‘do’ is replacing proving you ‘understand and remember.’ We need labs that provide instructional context to ensure learners can chart their own path, taking the skills developed in the lab and applying them to real-world scenarios. Skillable provides AI-powered tools that enable organizations to develop and validate skills more effectively, efficiently, and accurately."


Published Friday, July 14, 2023 7:30 AM by David Marshall
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