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95 percent of companies have thus far implemented generative AI tools. This is despite security concerns which are raised among nearly nine in 10 companies. To bridge the gap between usage and security, Zscaler offers some tips.

Zscaler’s research shows that the clear majority of companies are using generative AI tools. This appears to be driven primarily by the observed pressure to implement the tools, as 89 percent of companies are concerned about the technology’s security risks.

Zscaler’s survey provides recent figures from October 2023. 901 IT professionals with decisive powers participated, they are located across the Netherlands, Germany, France, Italy and Spain and outside the EU.

Tips for the security

For 33 percent of the companies, the security of the tools is still lagging, posing a real security risk. About two in 10 let employees have complete control over the tools and do not monitor usage. These companies will need to catch up quickly, according to the cloud security firm. Some tips for getting management and security in order include:

  • Establish a holistic zero-trust architecture for authorizing approved AI applications and users.
  • It’s also best to extend the zero-trust architecture to Data Loss Prevention measures to protect against data loss.
  • Thoroughly analyze the risks of new AI applications to identify vulnerabilities in advance and find a solution.
  • Set up a comprehensive logging system to track all AI prompts and responses.

So, most organizations do have security and policies in place. The survey also shows that generative AI tools are mostly introduced by IT teams (59% of companies who use the tools). These teams have more knowledge about the tools and the security necessary.

Attitude toward AI tools wastes the potential

“Generative AI tools, including ChatGPT and others, have tremendous potential to help organizations when it comes to speed, innovation and efficiency,” emphasizes Sanjay Kalra, VP of Product Management at Zscaler. “However, due to the lack of clarity around their security measures, only 39% of organizations see the adoption of GenAI tools as an opportunity rather than a threat. This not only puts the organization and the integrity of customer data at risk but also wastes the enormous potential of these tools.”

Also read: Executives have sky-high expectations of AI