Intelligent Machines Don’t Rule the World – But Can Shield Us!

by December 8, 2016 0 comments

By Tarun Kaura, Director- Product Solutions Management, APJ, Symantec

The sheer thought that machines could learn things beyond what we teach has kept previous generation and many of this era engrossed in sci-fi. A quick glance at Netflix and we have an array of options to watch movies where the villainous machines are plotting to unleash themselves and take over the world. However, isn’t it incredible that now when we have real artificial intelligence and machine learning very much as part of us, one of its key objectives is to be shielding us? To elaborate, at Symantec, we see over 10 trillion security events per year – more than one million pieces of malicious code per day – targeting consumers and businesses alike. Since we don’t have the required million cybersecurity experts to apply the code, it has to be done by machines – machines that learn from experience.

Tarun Kaura, Director- Product Solutions Management, APJ, Symantec

Tarun Kaura, Director- Product Solutions Management, APJ, Symantec

Driverless car is a widely discussed idea that turned into reality in just no time. Despite the awkward moment where people are skeptical and maybe scared to see new automation and numerous notable errors, Gartner says by 2020, a quarter billion connected vehicles will enable new in-vehicle services and automated driving capabilities. Hacking is part that comes along with digital automation, and that’s where machine learning takes a lead to shield us from vulnerabilities. Using a process of anomaly detection, these highly capable computers can learn what’s “normal” in a given car by simply observing the behavior of the vehicle. When an anomaly occurs, perhaps from any external malicious action, the vehicle can react accordingly and ensure safety.


It might sound bizarre to think of our water plants getting hacked! Undoubtedly the industrial plants have been playing significant role for us humans by aiding us with imperative requirements in daily lives, but it is an undermined fact that local water treatment plant across the globe are nothing but a mass of automation. Today, any alterations in the action of the water system are generally detected by instruments based on technology that is everything but new. However, it would be fair to expect that these industrial control systems will be infused with machine intelligence that will allow the system to react more efficiently to even slight anomalies.

It is important to note that even the idea of machine intelligence is ancient, its real life application has been more pervasive lately. As we continue to witness increased computing power, shrinking size, enhanced memory and the quantity of data available, AI and machine learning will grow manifolds. Every online purchase, ATM usage or even while a mere glance at digital ads, intelligent machines are shielding us from unfamiliar risks. It may not make for a great story as machines dominating the world – but it sure helps us all to sleep better.

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