Technology

Cyber Immunity Maybe The Antidote to Your Cyber Threats

It’s very obvious that the traditional firewall and intrusion detection systems often struggle to detect and repel so far unknown attacks but they may have not been working perfectly. This then calls for another dimension and cyber immunity could definitely be what you earnestly need.

The fact today is that cybercrimes don’t recognize borders and the criminals are becoming more proficient in their dastardly attacks. They are appearing every day, in all their different guises and through many different attack vectors. 

There is also and unfortunately so, no single known solution that offers comprehensive protection.  As the case might be even in our big data world, however, knowing where to pinpoint the source of the danger will go a long way to being able to combat the latest threats. 

For your business to thrive, it’s your overriding duty to protect your organization against today’s threats. You must endeavor to anticipate and be proactive about the dangers that lie ahead in the coming years. 

You can’t achieve this feat by employing just the normal smart operational protection against known threats. It definitely demands more than that, you need to put in place a high level of strategic security intelligence.

Cyber immunity borders on bio-inspired computing which essentially is an area of research in computer science that aims to build systems modeled after biological phenomenon. Cyber immunity Is expressly expected to be based on the human adaptive immune system. 

Cyber immunity often uses Machine Learning (ML) methods, an area of AI. ML in this instance is bio-inspired since it is imitating human learning capabilities on computers.

Despite the fact that we are not talking about humans here it’s, however, important to note that the human body has a remarkably effective defense mechanism, the immune system (IS), that detects a wide range of pathogenic or harmful agents, such as viruses, parasites, and microbes. It is on this framework that you need to base your cyber immunity. 

The IS has the capability to distinguish pathogens from healthy tissue. The skin fends off external threats to our body similarly to a firewall. It is constantly renewed and adaptive.

The biological systems of natural killer cells which you need to copy in coming up with your cyber immunity usually kill cells infected with known or unknown viruses, and of macrophages, which phagocytize bacteria.

With cyber immunity, you should be able to detect attacks that are not just based on their signature but even those that are based on anomalies detected in normal network traffic. Their learning and memory capabilities amply position them to detect and remember so far unknown attacks. 

Your cyber immunity naturally falls into the family of cybersecurity systems. Cybersecurity is the set of technologies and processes you put in place to protect computers, networks, programs, and data from attacks, unauthorized access, change, or destruction. 

One thing your cyber immune systems have as a plus is their ability to adapt ML techniques. Quite unlike other techniques,  ML techniques don’t need any programming or hardcoding by your programmer, they are well-equipped to learn the rules themselves. 

And better still, they are able to pick up new rules during runtime, in case new, inasmuch as unknown anomalies occur. 

Nature, guise, and advancement you encounter with cybercriminals show that in cybersecurity, you are contending with an ever-evolving adversary. Since the attack is unprecedented, you cannot learn the signature of the attack from the former ones. 

Rather than learn attack signatures, your cyber IS learns what normal network traffic looks like over an extended period of time. Once it has acquired this training, it can easily calculate the probability that a certain deviant pattern is malicious.

What more do you need than having cyber immunity that can constantly update its results based on any new evidence. The immune systems that will be able to cut off attacking agents by observing them and detecting where they are coming from and what information the agents are targeting.

It’s very important, however, to note that a cyber IS is not fully automated. You need security analysts to sometimes carry out verification of certain automatically detected potential cyber-attacks for their thread potential during training. 

You will definitely come across cases where human judgment must be applied, and your cyber forensic specialist has to come in for the analysis of the attack.

Photo Credit: Ben Taylor55 Flickr via Compfight cc

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About John Ejiofor

John Ejiofor is a curious life-researcher, whose quest to finding answers to life's pertinent questions has led to founding Nature Torch. This blog aims to debate and explore many questions about our earth -- including those a lot of people are uncomfortable with asking. He has been published on some of the internet's most respected websites, which you can find online.
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