U.S. Cybersecurity Researchers Bet on Big Data to Forecast Breaches

The latest example of Big Data’s rising role in security: The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity, which conducts research for the U.S. intelligence community, is working to predict cyberattacks well before they happen. Researchers will use publicly available data in combination with Big Data, predictive analytics, machine learning or other techniques, a spokesperson tells CIO Journal.

The goal is a minimum of a three day warning between the forecast and discovery of an actual event. Given the government’s record as a catalyst for all sorts of advanced technology – self-driving cars, robots, the Internet itself—one can hope that this effort produces worthwhile results.

As Facebook Inc. CIO Tim Campos told CIO Journal earlier this month, Big Data has a role to play in cybersecurity. “We use it to look at multiple things happening at one time—maybe there is a lot of traffic on an email server and a lot happening at one location, and both are unusual. Maybe they are related,” he said. “I am way over simplifying this, but you can imagine looking at many dimensions of complex event processing. That is where you get to the real value of Big Data in security.”


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