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More than half of IT professionals surveyed predicted the AI chatbot will be behind a successful hack within the year, while 71% believe foreign governments are already using it.
Half of IT professionals believe ChatGPT will be credited with a successful cyberattack within the next year, while 71% believe foreign nation-states are likely already using the technology, according to a recent report.
While respondents across the world believe that the artificial intelligence-driven chatbot is generally being used for “good” purposes, 74% of the 1,500 IT decision makers surveyed by BlackBerry said they are concerned about its threat to cybersecurity.
The biggest concern raised by IT professionals in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia is ChatGPT’s ability to help craft more effective phishing emails, followed by its potential to help spread misinformation and its helping hackers improve their technical knowledge and learn more specialized skills.
Most IT leaders plan to invest in AI-driven cybersecurity tools in the next two years, the survey also found, a trend that BlackBerry said shows concern that existing solutions will soon be inadequate against future threats. Shishir Singh, the company’s chief technology officer for cybersecurity, said as ChatGPT matures and hackers become more experienced at using it, “it will get more and more difficult to defend without also using AI in defense to level the playing field.”
Ninety-five percent of survey respondents said they believe governments have a responsibility to regulate advanced technologies like AI. In the U.S., the National Institute of Standards and Technology recently released its Artificial Intelligence Risk Management Framework, which looks to increase AI’s trustworthiness and mitigate risk and outlines how entities can build ethical systems.
With fewer ransomware victims—including local governments—paying to unlock their data, researchers said it is likely that hackers will look to other ways to make money, including using emerging technologies like AI. Brett Callow, a threat analyst at cybersecurity software company Emsisoft, said hacking organizations run like “legitimate businesses” and “will change their tactics to try and maximize return on investment.”
Singh, meanwhile, said the battle between cybersecurity professionals and hackers on how best to leverage AI for their purposes will dominate conversation in the next year. “Time will tell… who’s more effective,” he said.
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