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Exclusive: Expert AI predictions for 2024

Artificial Intelligence is at the heart of many company conversations these days, and there’s an extraordinary surge of interest as we head into 2024.  

When it’s harnessed and deployed by people who understand how it works best, AI can be a game changer. Here are some predictions by our experts for how the technology will be deployed in businesses in the next 12 months:

Bernd Greifeneder, Chief Technology Officer, Dynatrace

As employees become more accustomed to using AI in their personal lives, through exposure to tools such as ChatGPT, they will increasingly look to use AI to boost their productivity at work. Businesses have already realised that if they don’t empower their employees to use AI tools officially, they will do so without consent. Organisations will, therefore, appoint a chief AI officer (CAIO) to oversee their use of these technologies in the same way many have a security executive, or CISO, on their leadership teams. The CAIO will focus on developing policies and educating and empowering the workforce to use AI safely to protect the business from accidental noncompliance, intellectual property leakage, or security threats. These practices will pave the way for widespread adoption of AI across organisations. As this trend progresses, AI will become a commodity, as the mobile phone has.

Markus Nispel, Chief Technology Officer – EMEA – Extreme Networks

The ability to provide GenAI LLMs as a service by the big cloud providers allows vendors and all organisations to experiment and launch new GenAI-based services quickly. 2024 will see a tidal wave of GenAI-based solutions going into production at scale and being adopted, so the revenue from this will increase substantially. At the same time, the requirements around data sovereignty, privacy, cost, and latency will continue to drive demand for cloud edge deployments, so this will be another growth vector for the industry and those vendors who have built solutions with that cloud continuum in mind.

George Dragatsis, ANZ Chief Technology Officer, Hitachi Vantara

As a technology, AI is far from a new concept and has been part of everyday life for some time. Anyone who purchases items on Amazon, view movies on Netflix, or interacts with a Google assistant is making use of AI.  However, ChatGPT took AI awareness to the next level during 2023 and its speed of evolution is only going to continue to increase. AI will also shift from a ‘honeymoon’ phase and become an even more widely used business tool.

At the same time, when it comes to putting AI to work today, the focus tends to be on using it to improve efficiency and productivity. Generative AI tools can also help to lift staff to a higher level and enable them to focus on the more high-value or creative aspects of their jobs. In the past, workforce outsourcing has tended to focus on outsourcing the lower-level jobs to gain an economic benefit. In 2024, AI will increasingly provide an alternative to that approach.

Sally Vincent, Senior Threat Research Engineer, LogRhythm

In 2024, the symbiosis between AI and botnets will witness a significant surge. The convergence of AI capabilities will empower the proliferation and sophistication of botnets, amplifying their potency to orchestrate complex cyber threats. AI-powered botnets will exploit advanced algorithms to expand their reach and impact, intensifying the challenges faced by cybersecurity. This alarming trend will necessitate innovative defence strategies and heightened vigilance to counter the escalating threat posed by botnets, reshaping the landscape of digital security measures.

Chris Ellis, Pre-Sales Director, Nintex

During 2024, we’ll be witness to the democratisation of AI and generative AI, making the revolutionary capability far more accessible and ultimately adopted across business users and ‘citizen developers’. We’re starting to see this wider availability through uses such as within the Microsoft Office suite and ServiceNow’s recent declaration that AI presents a potential $1 trillion total addressable market. Compared to just automation alone at $200 billion, this presents a significant opportunity for organisations and vendors alike. 

At the same time, we’ll see a doubling down on cybersecurity and associated risk mitigation as the advancement of AI presents a more significant challenge to business integrity and critical data. What is shared—and with whom—will become a significant watch point for organisations. Early indications are that some are considering hybrid deployments, moving certain workloads back to on-premises as a means of protecting intellectual property. 

Keeping up with the rate of change and fostering a culture of adoption through awareness and learning will be critical for business success in 2024.  At every stage of the IT exposure landscape, we are bombarded with news and media about the advent of AI. The challenge is going to be applying it to your organisation in a compliant and cost-effective way that doesn’t orchestrate users or blow out the bottom line.

Corey Nachreiner, Chief Technology Officer, WatchGuard Technologies

2024 will see a boom in an emerging market for automated spear phishing tools, or a combination of tools, on the dark web. Spear phishing is one of the most effective tools attackers have to breach networks. However, traditionally it has also required the most manual work to research and target victims. There are already publicly available tools for sale on the underground to send spam email, automatically craft convincing, targeted text when equipped with the right prompts, and scrape the Internet and social media for a particular target’s information and connections, but a lot of these tools are still manual and require attackers to target one user or group at a time. Well-formatted procedural tasks like these are perfect for automation via AI/ML. During 2024, we expect to see at least one AI/ML-based tool to help automated spear phishing show up for sale on the underground.

Uzi Dvir, CTO, WalkMe

Technology vendors promised that generative AI would drastically increase productivity, but we did not see this live up to the hype in 2023.   In 2024, we are likely to see generative AI-driven chatbots, virtual assistants, and automation tools become more sophisticated and capable, as well as more integrated into the global economy.  Employees who are more capable of using AI tools are likely to outcompete peers with less technology literacy. Because of this, organisations will be tasked with addressing growing gaps in workforce performance, accelerated by the outsized contribution of AI technologies.

Carl Warwick, VP Asia Pacific and Japan, BillingPlatform

During 2024, billing processes will become even more automated, leveraging AI and machine learning algorithms to handle complex invoicing, payment processing, and reconciliation tasks. This automation will improve efficiency, reduce errors, and enhance the overall billing experience for both businesses and customers.  At the same time, the trend toward subscription-based services, particularly in software and cloud computing, will continue.

Billing systems will evolve to accommodate diverse subscription models, tiered pricing, and customisable billing cycles to meet the needs of subscription-based businesses.  In addition, as the Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem expands, billing systems will integrate with IoT devices, enabling businesses to monetise IoT services effectively. IoT-driven usage-based billing models will gain prominence, requiring flexible and scalable billing solutions.

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