How data enrichment and AI can protect businesses from bot attacks

November 08, 2022

How data enrichment and AI can protect businesses from bot attacks

Technology has never been as present as today and will only continue to spread. While it has brought numerous benefits to our personal and professional lives, unfortunately, it has also brought some downsides. Cybersecurity threats are quickly becoming an ever-present threat that everyone must be aware of. They can happen anytime to anyone, from governments, the military, companies to individuals. 

With the increased development of bots, the danger becomes greater as they can be used by even novice cybercriminals while still causing significant damage. Anticipating, recognizing, and combating them is crucial, and we will need all the tools at our disposal to do so. Using AI can be the solution we all hoped for.

The increasing danger of bots

The truth is that bots are not necessarily malicious, as there are many bots that are used to make our lives easier. From being used to 24/7 customer support to optimizing search patterns, there are numerous ways the bots can be used for good. The way they behave is dictated by the intent of the person using them, which can be good or bad. Unfortunately, it looks like the bad ones are taking the lead. A study from Barracuda discovered that bots account for 64% of all web traffic, with “bad bots” accounting for 39%. 

Due to our growing online presence, more and more sensitive data become available daily. Malicious actors will do anything in their power to get their hands on it, as they can use it for different fraudulent activities, from identity theft to financial fraud. Unfortunately, bots can make this even easier for them. Implementing bot detection software is no longer just an option; it has become crucial for any business that has an online presence.

How can bots damage your business?

Bot attacks are quite different from other types of cyber attacks as they do not require a malicious actor to be a hacker or even technologically advanced. Anyone can easily rent the bots on the dark web and still do the same level of damage, which is why it is so dangerous. 

Check-out abuse: For example, malicious actors could implement bots that purchase all the products or even tickets for an event before other possible customers could do so. This results in financial loss for the company, while at the same time can damage the customers’ possible future interactions.

Affiliate fraud: Bots will create false leads that will seem legitimate to a company, emptying their marketing budget while accomplishing no sales. 

Social engineering: Bots will pretend to be a legitimate party and try to manipulate unsuspecting victims into revealing personal information. Hackers can then use this information for further malicious actions such as data breaches, account takeover, or identity theft.

Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks: This happens when bots overwhelm a website or a server with requests making it unavailable to legitimate customers. 

Spam: Bots can be used to spam your website leaving bad comments, directing users to some other sites, or creating unnecessary clutter. 

Looking for vulnerabilities: Some bots are created to analyze the website for any vulnerabilities, which they pass on to the hackers that can exploit them.

Presence of AI in everyday life

Artificial Intelligence is actually nothing new, as it has been present in our lives for a while now. Many companies have been using it for different tasks, such as chatbots, predictive analytics, data collection, voice assistants to even reshaping recruitment technology. Implementing AI in these tasks saves time, money, and resources companies would have to invest when performing them manually. For example, tech giants like Amazon have infiltrated AI in various aspects of their business operations, such as with Alexa, the digital voice assistant, or with predictive analytics used to recommend items to its customers. They are not the only ones. From the world’s biggest tech giants to up-and-rising companies, they are all trying to find the best ways to automate their business operations to optimize them. 

Difference AI and data enrichment can make in cybersecurity

The biggest issue in bot prevention strategy is recognizing the difference between good and bad bots, as we do want to continue using all the benefits good bots can introduce to the business. But that gets increasingly challenging with the malicious bots using new technologies to update how they behave and mirror human behavior more closely. This makes them harder to detect for standard cybersecurity solutions, especially the ones still using only manual procedures. Implementing AI and data enrichment is the only way forward. 

Artificial intelligence uses historical data, machine learning, and algorithms to detect the patterns of cyber threats and learn to adapt to them as they change. Introducing AI and data enrichment into the cybersecurity strategy offers businesses a way to predict potential threats and stop them before they can do any damage. This is why it is so valuable in the fight against bots. Not only can it recognize the difference between good and bad bots, but it can also detect subtle changes in user behavior that might indicate bots taking over their account or pretending to be legitimate sources. 

Utilizing AI and data enrichment can allow businesses to protect their employees from social engineering attacks more effectively, as it stops their exposure to potential threats. AI can quickly and efficiently scan every email, detecting any suspicious activity and blocking them before they even reach end users. The same principle applies to other types of attacks, such as account takeover, affiliate fraud, malware attacks, and even DDoS attacks. All of them can be predicted, detected, and prevented by the use of AI and data enrichment.

Conclusion

The reason why bots pose one of the most significant risks for cybersecurity is their adaptability, as they can quickly adapt to cybersecurity solutions, especially if they remain static. This is why AI must become a necessary part of any effective cybersecurity solutions. It can learn from bots’ current and historical behavior, adapt to it and prevent them from causing any significant damage. Cybercriminals are using all the technological advancements at their disposal to update their malicious actions; It is time businesses start to take the same steps to protect themselves from them.

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