Cybersecurity challenges in the AI age



As a general-purpose, dual-use technology, AI can be both a blessing and a curse for cybersecurity. This is confirmed by the fact that AI is being used both as a sword (i.e. in support of malicious attacks) and as a shield (to counter cybersecurity risks). With an additional complication: while the use of AI for defensive purposes faces a number of constraints, especially as governments move to regulate high-risk applications and promote the responsible use of AI, on the attack side the most pernicious uses are multiplying, the cost of developing applications is plummeting, and the ‘attack surface’ is becoming denser every day, making any form of defense an uphill battle. Further complicating matters, the datasets, from which AI models are built, are also vulnerable to manipulation. 

As infrastructure and devices become more digitalized and the era of the Internet of Things (IoT) dawns, paired together with advances in AI, the potential attack surface for cyber-attacks will densify. These risks must be taken into consideration by policy makers and technologists in order to minimize risks to populations worldwide.

Introductory Remarks
Alberto García Gómez Photo

UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights

Madrid, Spain, 1964. Doctor in Law from Complutense University in Madrid. Currently he is Director of the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights, based in Rome. Professor of Philosophy of Law, Constitutional and International Law at Regina Apostolorum University in Rome. Furthermore, he is a researcher of the Human Rights Institute at Complutense University and Member of the following Ethical Advisory Boards:  ITERA (International Tissue Engineering Research Association) Life-Sciences Network, Cryo-Save and EU Projects CASCADE and REBORNE (within 7th Framework Program). For 5 years he has been member of the Steering Committee of Bioethics in the Council of Europe and in 2005 he has been honoured with the National Prize of the Spanish Royal Academy of Doctors in the field of legal and social sciences. Recently awarded by COEBIO for his contribution to bioethics and human rights at international level he has also received in 2014 the "Otto Meyerhoff Award" for his outstanding achievements and innovations in the field of human rights and bioethics. He has been involved in three EU projects: EUROSOL (Solidarity in Times of Crisis), CivicAL (Civic Dimensions for Social Inclusion) and i-CONSENT (Improving the guidelines of informed consent, including vulnerable populations, under a gender perspective). Member of the Group of Study in ‘Neurobioethics’ and the Group of Study in ‘Bioethics, Multiculturalism and Religion’ promoted by the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights.


Head of the Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics at UNICRI, United Nations.

Irakli Beridze is the Head of the Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics at UNICRI, United Nations​. More than 20 years of experience in leading multilateral negotiations, developing stakeholder engagement programmes with governments, UN agencies, international organisations, private industry and corporations, think tanks, civil society, foundations, academia, and other partners on an international level. Mr Beridze is advising governments and international organizations on numerous issues related to international security, scientific and technological developments, emerging technologies, innovation and disruptive potential of new technologies, particularly on the issue on crime prevention, criminal justice and security. He is supporting governments worldwide on the strategies, action plans, roadmaps and policy papers on AI. Since 2014, Initiated and managed one of the first United Nations Programmes on AI. Initiating and organizing number of high-level events at the United Nations General Assembly, and other international organizations. Finding synergies with traditional threats and risks as well as identifying solutions that AI can contribute to the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. He is a member of various international task forces, including the World Economic​ Forum’s Global Artificial Intelligence Council, the UN High-level panel for digital cooperation, the High-Level Expert Group on Artificial Intelligence of the European Commission.  He is frequently lecturing and speaking on the subjects related to technological development, exponential technologies, artificial intelligence and robotics and international security. He has numerous publications in international journals and magazines and frequently quoted in media on the issues related to AI. Irakli Beridze is an International Gender Champion supporting the IGC Panel Parity Pledge. He is also recipient of recognition on the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to the OPCW in 2013.​


Practice Manager, Digital Development Global Practice, The World Bank

Mark Williams is Practice Manager for Global Knowledge and Expertise in the Digital Development Global Practice. He is an economist with 20 years of experience in the economics, regulation and strategy of the digital sector, covering a range of specialist areas including strategy, policy, regulation, financial analysis corporate restructuring, and litigation.
He has worked in some of the world’s leading economic consulting firms - NERA, Frontier Economics, Deloitte and Berkeley Research Group (BRG). Previously in his career, he spent six years as an economist in the World Bank’s Global ICT team focusing on analytical work and operations in the Middle East and Africa.


Research Fellow, Georgetown’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology (CSET)

Katerina Sedova is a Research Fellow at Georgetown’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology (CSET), where she works on the CyberAI Project. Most recently, she advised Sen. Maggie Hassan on cybersecurity and technology policy issues and drafted key legislation as a TechCongress fellow with the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. Previously, she published research and advised projects on disinformation, state-sponsored information operations and OSINT for the NATO Strategic Communications Center of Excellence, the Department of State and the Department of Defense. She started her career at Microsoft, where she led engineering teams in the security, networking and performance components of the internet browsing platform. She was named as an inventor on multiple patents awarded to Microsoft. She holds a B.A. in Political Science from California State University and an M.S. in Foreign Service from Georgetown University, where she focused on strategic competition and engagement in the cyber domain, Russia, Ukraine and NATO. She speaks Ukrainian and Russian.


Digital Specialist, Center for Digital Acceleration, DAI.

Galia Nurko is a Digital Specialist at DAI’s Center for Digital Acceleration, where she focuses on digital risk issues like cybersecurity, privacy and mis/disinformation. Prior to working for DAI, she severed as the Director of Media Relations at the Embassy of Israel to the United States, a Project Consultant at the Institute for Integrated Transitions, and a Graduate Policy Fellow at the Information Technology and Information Foundation. Galia has conducted research on perceptions of privacy and trust on the internet in India and Ghana, on how technology affects access to services and jobs, as well as on the challenges posed by digital finance solutions in emerging economies.


Event Type: Webinar

Date: Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Time: 9:00 – 10:00 AM EDT

Venue/Location: Virtual

Working Group: Law and Technology