Cyber Talk Radio: Mathematical Security & AI Threat Detection

Bret Piatt, CTR Host, and Stuart McClure, CEO and Founder of Cylance and author of Hacking Exposed - Episode 155 of Cyber Talk Radio

This past Sunday, September 15, episode 155 of Cyber Talk Radio hit the air on 1200 WOAI and iHeartRadio streaming. I was joined by Stuart McClure, CEO and Founder of Cylance and author of Hacking Exposed, to discuss mathematical security and using artificial intelligence (AI) for threat detection and prevention.

We begin the episode giving our listeners some insight on how Stuart first got interested in the field of cybersecurity — he started his journey with an interest in IT, so then he first took a computer class in the 80s. A few years later, he came across an attack on the university where he was working as a teacher’s assistant! After that, he was challenged by another assistant to hack his well-protected computer, which he was successful in doing in only three sleepless days. He’s founded a number of companies in the 20 years since then. As an entrepreneur, Stuart enjoys being in control of his destiny, even despite the panic and anxiety of the instability of being an entrepreneur. He gives a wise piece of advice to others who want to go in that same direction: Make sure you find a real problem that needs to be solved. Cylance, Stuart’s most recent company, was started because nobody else had believed in his conviction of the importance of AI. So, he decided to find the most effective way of preventing an attack and tried to teach a computer to use AI to figure that out for itself through machine learning. The future of this industry really lies in embracing math, prediction and machine learning to keep up with new, unknown attacks. In terms of fulfilling your potential, Stuart firmly believes that you don’t have to end wars or cure cancer, instead you should just find the one thing you want to solve and put your all into it. At the minimum, you’ll be happy in the pursuit of solving the problem!

After the break, we dive deep into AI, machine learning and deep learning. It’s all about teaching computers to get increasingly smarter based on the accurate labeled data you feed it. How far are we from general and human-like AI, similar to what we see in movies? It is a potential — but not very probable — problem. We give an in-depth analysis of both good and bad AI bots. Stuart and I also hash out a common ethical cybersecurity dilemma: What do you do when you find vulnerabilities in cybersecurity products — if you find one do you tell the company or vendor before announcing it publicly? We agree that we won’t shame the company or disclose to regulatory institutions, unless it becomes clear that they won’t try to fix it, because that is not fair to the users who have put trust in the product.

Listen to the full episode replay to learn more about Cylance and Stuart’s passion for threat detection.

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