Google announces free AI tools to fight cybercrime

Google has announced an initiative to provide artificial intelligence tools and investments to bolster online security, as the emerging technology is increasingly used to both protect against and perpetrate cybercrime.

Google will introduce a new open-source resource powered by AI that utilises file type identification to help detect malware, the company said in a statement on Friday. The tool, which is already being used to protect products including Gmail and Google Drive, will be made available for free.

The company will also release a white paper on Friday at the Munich Security Conference in Germany that details how it is using AI for cyber defense and that proposes a policy agenda that calls for advanced AI research and guardrails on autonomous cyber defences.

“Our AI Cyber Defence Initiative reverses the ‘defender’s dilemma’, where defenders have to be right all the time and attackers have to be right only once,” Kent Walker, the president for global affairs at Google, said in a statement. “To keep up the momentum, we need policies that both mitigate the risks and seize the opportunities of AI.”

Google also announced additional investments in research grants and partnerships to advance cybersecurity research initiatives using AI and an expansion of cybersecurity seminars, including AI-focused modules.

Hackers are also integrating AI into their cyber operations. State-sponsored criminal groups are using large language models like OpenAI’s ChatGPT to improve their strategies and troubleshoot technical issues, according to a report by Microsoft this week.

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