Using innovation as a security game-changer

Innovation has the power to bring about deep and wide-ranging transformation in security. Find out the areas to pay attention to.

Using innovation as a security game-changer

Innovation has the power to bring about deep and wide-ranging transformation in security. Find out the areas to pay attention to.

Kevin Brown
Kevin BrownManaging Director, BT Security

Today, organisations need to break free from a cyber security strategy based solely on reacting to threats.

Moving forward will involve recognising that innovation is our strongest tool to build a secure future – and we need to weave it into every area of our cyber security.

It’s time to break the cycle

It’s easy to see how we’ve got here. We’re so dependent on technology and connectivity that the rising tide of threats against them is eating up our attention and resources. Security is in a constant arms race to prevent cyber attacks from causing damage to prosperity, safety, trust and, increasingly, the environment. But it’s always reactive, distracting us from other priorities, like the growing security skills crisis, and our responsibility to find more sustainable ways of exploiting new AI-based technologies. We can’t let this continue.

The good news is that innovation can bring about deep and wide-ranging transformation in security – if we’re open to the possibilities.

Here are three areas to watch out for: 

1. Innovative uses of automation will transform security

As artificial intelligence (AI) and automation ramp up to enable the processing of massive amounts of data and increasingly intelligent, predictive responses, organisations will recognise its potential, and automation will take centre stage in security.

This is a critical shift. Automation is an efficient answer to the increasing volume of cyber threats, and it’s essential to keeping pace with cyber criminals who have already made the leap. AI-powered automation can help identify relevant intelligence from the sea of incoming data that threatens to overwhelm the security department, and take on more mundane security tasks. This will free up staff to focus on urgent and high-priority threats.

2. Innovation will be essential to bridging the security skills gap

As an industry, we openly acknowledge the scarcity of specialised security talent. This needs to translate into clear action, and automation is just one small part of how innovation can maximise our resources.

We need to go wider, encouraging people to trust that they can hand over parts of their job to innovative, intelligent technologies, unlocking their time and potential to focus on complex and challenging issues. Innovation can continue providing new ways for cyber experts to collaborate and work in a hybrid world – offering different techniques for reaching and attracting recruits into the industry. Innovation, too, can help us bring more diversity to security, attracting and nurturing young talent wherever we can find it.

3. Innovation will be our route to sustainability

There are two sides to this coin. On one side, innovative security is essential to reducing energy usage and wastage – the more cyber attacks we can tackle at source, the less downtime and ‘friction’ there’ll be across the internet that wastes energy and resources. 

On the other side, innovative security has a wider role for a more sustainable society. We need to innovate to defend other emerging innovations, like large-scale renewable energy grids and smart connected infrastructures. We also need consumers to have confidence that new sustainable approaches like electric vehicles will be protected and reliable. To unlock the benefits of innovative sustainability, security has to be an enabler – this will require building innovation into our approach.

We should continue to make innovation the thread that runs through our cyber security. I believe it’s the key to a robust cyber strategy that’s ready to protect your organisation from evolving or unknown threats.