RSA Conference's 'Most Innovative Startup' Does ... You Guessed It: AI

The security-focused RSA Conference 2023 prominently featured AI, the topic of many sessions and announcements and the specialty of multiple award winners.

The latter includes HiddenLayer, a company that provides security for machine learning, which was named the "Most Innovative Startup" and won the annual RSAC Innovation Sandbox. That contest, in its 18th year, involved 10 finalists who each had three minutes to woo a panel of judges on their respective offerings. As noted, the winner's offering is centered around AI -- specifically machine learning -- like most things these days.

"HiddenLayer was selected by a panel of esteemed judges for helping enterprises safeguard the machine learning models behind their critical products with a comprehensive security platform," RSA Conference said in an April 24 news release. "An AI application security company based out of Austin, Texas, its patent-pending solutions monitor machine learning algorithms for adversarial ML attack techniques."

The company's web site says, "HiddenLayer's patent-pending solution provides a noninvasive, software-based platform that monitors the inputs and outputs of your machine learning algorithms for anomalous activity consistent with adversarial ML attack techniques. Response actions are immediate with a flexible response framework to protect your ML."

Another AI specialist, Concentric AI, a vendor of intelligent AI-based solutions for autonomous data security posture management, won the Publisher's Choice Award for Data Security Posture Management for its Semantic Intelligence solution, bestowed by Cyber Defense Magazine. Concentric AI's site says, "Concentric Semantic Intelligence solution uses sophisticated machine learning technologies to autonomously scan and categorize data. Our solution discovers and categorizes all your data, from financial data to PII/PHI/PCI to intellectual property to business confidential information."

Cyber Defense Magazine has named winners in various categories at the event for years. Several of those categories relate to AI or machine learning, with pertinent winners, their specific award and their category, being:

  • Flexxon Pte. Ltd, Editor's Choice, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
  • Silobreaker, Hot Company, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
  • Deloitte, Publisher's Choice, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
  • StrikeReady, Most Innovative, Applied Artificial Intelligence in Cybersecurity
  • Coro, Cutting Edge, Cybersecurity Artificial Intelligence
  • Deloitte, Hot Company, Cybersecurity Artificial Intelligence
  • Deep Instinct, Most Comprehensive, Cybersecurity Artificial Intelligence

As far as announcements, there were plenty of AI-themed ones made during the conference from vendors both small and big. For the latter, for example, Google Cloud announced Security AI Workbench, described as an industry-first platform that enables security partners to extend generative AI to their products. You can read more about that in the Virtualization & Cloud Review article, "Google Matches Microsoft with AI-Powered Security Offering."

[Click on image for larger view.] Google Cloud Security AI Workbench (source: Google).

IBM, which famously switched its focus to hybrid cloud and AI a few years ago, launched the new QRadar Security Suite to speed threat detection and response.

The new offering includes EDR/XDR, SIEM, SOAR and a new cloud-native log management capability, all of which are built around a common user interface, shared insights and connected workflows, said IBM, which listed the following core design elements:

  • Unified Analyst Experience: Refined in collaboration with hundreds of real-world users, the suite features a common, modernized user interface across all products: designed to dramatically increase analyst speed and efficiency across the entire attack chain. It is embedded with enterprise-grade AI and automation capabilities that have been shown to speed alert investigation and triage by 55% in the first year, on average.
  • Cloud Delivery, Speed & Scale: Delivered as a service on Amazon Web Services (AWS), QRadar Suite products allow for simplified deployment, visibility and integration across cloud environments and data sources. The suite also includes a new, cloud-native log management capability optimized for highly efficient data ingestion, rapid search and analytics at scale.
  • Open Foundation, Pre-Built Integrations: The suite brings together the core technologies needed across threat detection, investigation and response -- built around an open foundation, an extensive partner ecosystem, and more than 900 pre-built integrations that provide strong interoperability between IBM and third-party toolsets.

There were also many AI-related sessions, such as "Quick Look: ChatGPT: A New Generation of Dynamic Machine Based Attacks?"

"In the last year there has been much furor around ChatGPT, a chatbot that is evolving both through trained and reinforced learning techniques," RSA said about that session. "As with every scientific advancement that has noble intent, there will inevitably be a scope for misuse. This session will explore the art of the possible and consider whether ML can outsmart the human in the cyber attack domain."

There were plenty more sessions, announcements and awards related to AI at RSA Security 2023, which can be investigated further at the conference site. The big increase in AI-related content compared to a year ago (the pre-ChatGPT era) shows just how much AI is changing the security space, along with most other things these days. The conference is ending today (April 27).

About the Author

David Ramel is an editor and writer for Converge360.


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