Researchers leverage AI to combat cyber threats

Researchers from Australia’s CDU and India’s CAIAS have unveiled in groundbreaking research the role of AI in combating cybercrime.

Researchers from Charles Darwin University's Energy and Resources Institute (CDU) in Australia collaborated with experts from Christ Academy Institute for Advanced Studies (CAIAS) in India to conduct a pioneering study exploring the role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in countering the growing threat of cybercrime.
Led by Bharanidharan Shanmugam, a senior lecturer in Information Technology at CDU, the study aimed to evaluate the potential of AI in automating key aspects of penetration testing, a critical cybersecurity practice.
The investigation delved into the use of generative AI (GenAI) in penetration testing, which seeks to identify vulnerabilities within digital defenses. By harnessing AI's power, the study aims to modernize cybersecurity approaches, offering a more efficient way to identify weaknesses in digital infrastructure.
With cyber threats on the rise, integrating AI technology holds promise in strengthening defenses against malicious actors. This collaboration between leading institutions signifies progress in protecting global digital ecosystems, a release stated.
Researchers employed ChatGPT to perform various pen-testing activities, including reconnaissance, scanning, and exploitation. The results showed ChatGPT's potential to automate tasks effectively, highlighting the prospect of AI-driven cybersecurity protocols.
Shanmugam emphasized the significance of responsible AI deployment, data security, and collaboration in maintaining a secure digital environment. He stressed the importance of organizations adopting best practices to leverage AI effectively against evolving threats.
“While ChatGPT proved to be an excellent GenAI tool for pentesting for the previous phases, it showed the greatest in exploiting the vulnerabilities of the remote machine. Organizations must adopt best practices and guidelines, focusing on responsible AI deployment, data security and privacy, and fostering collaboration and information sharing,” he said.

“By doing so, organizations can leverage the power of GenAI to better protect themselves against the ever-evolving threat landscape and maintain a secure digital environment for all,” he added.
The research underscores the evolving role of AI in cybersecurity and highlights strides made in leveraging technology to fortify digital defenses. Collaborations like these pave the way for proactive approaches to safeguarding digital infrastructure against cyber threats.