IBM Security announced Watson for Cyber Security on Tuesday, a cloud-based version of the company's cognitive technology that will focus on learning the language of cybersecurity.
The project is working to improve security analysts' capabilities by automating the "connections between data, emerging threats and remediation strategies.”
IBM will collaborate with eight universities starting this fall to expand the collection of security data IBM has trained Watson with.
With its Watson cybersecurity effort, IBM is working to automate threat intelligence, allowing a machine to make connections in data that humans are sometimes unable to find. As an added bonus, if the project proves successful, businesses could integrate Watson's cybersecurity into their security platforms, helping to bridge the cybersecurity skills gap.
"Even if the industry was able to fill the estimated 1.5 million open cybersecurity jobs by 2020, we'd still have a skills crisis in security," said Marc van Zadelhoff, General Manager, IBM Security. "The volume and velocity of data in security is one of our greatest challenges in dealing with cybercrime.”
IBM hopes that Watson will eventually provide insights into emerging threats, as well as recommendations on how to stop them. It will be the first technology to offer cognition of security data at scale using Watson's ability to reason and learn from "unstructured data," according to IBM.
The average organization sees over 200,000 pieces of security event data per day with enterprises spending $1.3 million a year dealing with false positives alone, according to IBM. Students will help build Watson's body of knowledge by feeding the system security reports and data. IBM will also feed Watson the data from its security research library.
Universities involved in the project include California State Polytechnic University, Pomona; Pennsylvania State University; Massachusetts Institute of Technology; New York University; the University of Maryland, Baltimore County; the University of New Brunswick; the University of Ottawa and the University of Waterloo.