will the chatbot boom bring increased security?

Chatbots Against Cybercriminals

In the fight against cybercrime, new weapons and approaches are being developed and employed all the time. Sometimes, help in combating cybercriminals comes from somewhat unexpected places, such as chatbots.

Chatbots are, in essence, computer programs designed to hold a conversation with a human user as if they themselves were human. They achieve this by employing artificial intelligence which allows them to, sometimes very closely, mimic a human-led conversation. Applications of chatbots in, for instance, banking have been plentiful, such as customer greeting, voice-assisted banking, customer support and providing assistance and advice to customers, as well as reminding customers to pay their bills as a deadline approaches. 

Lately, in particular with the integration of machine learning and artificial intelligence in general in fraud detection and prevention systems, chatbots have also started playing an increasingly relevant role in combating fraud. Since they are active around the clock and can react in real time, they provide another layer of security and enable immediate reaction upon fraud detection. In fact, work is under way on even more sophisticated algorithms that will allow chatbots to identify threats that might be missed by human operators and traditional IT security protocols. 

Some banks and card issuers have already provided their customers with a quick and easy way to block a stolen or lost credit or debit card using a single message sent to a dedicated chatbot. Others employ chatbots to alert their customers of suspected fraudulent transactions involving their accounts, after which the customer can immediately - via that same chatbot - stop the transaction if they so wish, by using a simple command.

Since chatbots are simple to use and interact with – they not only increase security but also customer satisfaction, thus providing customers with a very satisfying user experience as well as helping banks and card issuers combat fraud.

They may also lay the groundwork for an even more advanced AI systems that will keep a network's infrastructure secure from the get go and remove the need for "on the fly" solutions.