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Microsoft’s Own CISO Says Patching Remains Top Activity

March 28, 2023

By Mike Walters

I recently attended several sessions of the virtual Microsoft Secure conference. The main focus was on the impact of AI in revolutionizing cybersecurity. A demonstration was provided for Microsoft Security Copilot, a GPT-4 language model developed by Microsoft, similar to ChatGPT. This system integrates threat intelligence with an organization’s IT infrastructure, creating a robust tool for investigating ransomware incidents. The name cleverly implies that humans will still be in control, with AI acting as an assistant, alleviating concerns about AI replacing jobs.

Following the keynote presentations, a session featured Microsoft’s CISO Bret Arsenault and Vodafone’s CISO Emma Smith discussing cybersecurity initiatives. They mentioned AI’s potential in addressing the shortage of cybersecurity talent. When Emma inquired about Bret’s current daily priorities, he highlighted patch management and security hardening as his main concerns. Clearly, these traditional security measures continue to be relevant and essential.

Despite Microsoft’s advanced tools and capabilities, its CISO still faces challenges in patch management. This demonstrates that even long-standing technology concepts can remain in their early stages and present unresolved issues.

Expanding on this topic, I will explore possible uses of AI in patch management and how we can integrate it at Action1 to improve our risk-based patch management system:

Vulnerability detection: AI algorithms can automatically scan code repositories, network devices, and software applications for known vulnerabilities and potential weaknesses, reducing the time and effort spent by human experts.
Patch prioritization: AI can analyze the severity, exploitability, and impact of vulnerabilities, enabling IT teams to prioritize patches based on risk.
Patch testing and validation: AI can be used to automatically test patches in controlled environments to ensure compatibility and effectiveness, reducing the chances of introducing new issues or conflicts with existing software and systems.
Predictive analytics: AI-powered predictive analytics can help identify potential future vulnerabilities based on historical data, trends, and patterns, allowing organizations to proactively address and patch potential issues before they become critical.
Auto-patching: Some AI systems can automatically apply patches to vulnerable software and systems without requiring manual intervention. This can help minimize the window of exposure and reduce the burden on IT teams.
Incident response: In case of a security breach, AI can assist with incident response by quickly identifying compromised systems, helping to determine the scope of the breach, and recommending remediation steps, including patching.

About Action1

Action1 provides a risk-based patch management solution for distributed work-from-anywhere organizations. Action1 helps to discover, prioritize, and remediate vulnerabilities in a single solution to prevent security breaches and ransomware attacks. It automates patching of third-party applications, patching of operating systems, drivers, and firmware, ensuring continuous patch compliance and remediation of security vulnerabilities before they are exploited.

See What You Can Do with Action1


Join our weekly LIVE demo “Patch Management That Just Works with Action1” to learn more

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