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The importance of innovation in cyber security


24 April 2017

Ben Azvine

Blogs by author: Ben Azvine, Head of Security Futures Practice


Innovation continues to evolve the cyber threat landscape, and these new developments are helping us to address the threats of tomorrow.

We hear stories about cyber security in the media on a daily basis. Technology is one of the main weapons used to breach defences of companies and people’s homes, leading to financial loss and worse. Innovation is critical to countering these developing threats, and is helping to simplify the future of cyber security, both for our network and our customers.

Big data analytics is a key area in which we’re seeing impactful innovations emerging, and when applied to security, big data gives us a real edge.

But I think one of the challenges remains to be turning data into actionable insight. I’m often asked, what is big data analytics really about? There’s now ample ways to capture data but where the analytics come in is turning it into something of value to the wider business – both data scientists but also decision makers.

The importance of innovation in cyber securityMy research on visual analytics is based on the fact that we tend to react to images more naturally than text or rows of numbers. And if we’re able to turn rich but complicated data into pictures and better equip sales and marketing teams, IT and networking managers or security professionals, as well as our key decision makers, then that’s a real game changer. This area combines the power of computers to turn large volumes of data in pictures, and power of humans who can spot changes or anomalies in pictures easily even if they haven’t seen them before.

This technology can be rolled out across industries. For example our retail customers might use our visual analytics tool to identify which marketing promotions have been successful, while mining companies might use the same technology to get to the bottom of why some mines are less efficient than others. It’s about allowing customers to benefit from real-time data, situational awareness, and a clear understanding of cyber threats – all to provide an early warning of suspicious behaviours and allow a quick response.