Rapid7 Launches AI Security Research Partnership with CSIT, Queen’s University Belfast

Collaboration between cybersecurity industry and academia speeds cloud security innovations to market

Belfast, NI — May 14, 2024

Rapid7, Inc. (NASDAQ: RPD), a leader in extended risk and threat detection,announced today that it has launched a new security research partnership with the Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT) at Queen’s University Belfast (QUB) to drive ongoing innovation in cloud security.

This new partnership within CSIT’s Cyber-AI Hub will utilise artificial intelligence (AI) and advanced machine learning (ML) techniques to detect risks and active threats within cloud environments, with an initial research area being the identification of the potential exposure of sensitive information. According to a recent report by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), cybercriminals possessing any level of sophistication will soon be able to leverage AI to significantly enhance their initial access capabilities. This includes access to cloud services, which are notoriously complex and therefore difficult to secure — leaving many organisations vulnerable to a potential data breach.

“This security research partnership comes at a time when there is still a defender advantage surrounding AI,” said Raj Samani, senior vice president and chief scientist, Rapid7. “That window will close, however, so an industry-academia partnership like Rapid7 and CSIT have is critical for expediting the discovery and delivery of security advancements to businesses and society at large.”

Rapid7 has a longstanding project-based relationship with CSIT; in 2022, Rapid7 and CSIT were jointly recognized with multiple awards for their groundbreaking AI research in application security.

“CSIT is excited to build on its existing partnership with Rapid7, and I’ve been personally delighted to see the ease with which our teams collaborate,” said Dr. Paul Miller, Cyber-AI Hub Director, CSIT. “The Cyber-AI Hub brings CSIT’s academic and engineering expertise to industry-defined challenges to collaboratively advance research and discovery for improved cybersecurity outcomes. This initiative stems from a shared vision to maintain Northern Ireland’s leadership in cybersecurity technology globally.”

As part of this research partnership, Rapid7 will be supporting CSIT in understanding the data available in cloud environments, and the emerging attacker techniques and motivations that are driving the pursuit of cloud data. The partnership combines the vast AI and industry expertise of Rapid7’s R&D team with leading AI research approaches from CSIT. At no point will customer data be shared or used for this partnership.

The Rapid7 platform currently applies AI-driven anomalous activity detection across multi-cloud and hybrid environments to more rapidly and accurately classify and prioritise threats, thereby enhancing security teams’ visibility and response times. Continuing AI research into cloud-based detections reinforces the company’s commitment to giving organisations command of their attack surface.

To learn more about Rapid7 Research, visit https://www.rapid7.com/research/.

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About CSIT and the Cyber-AI Hub

CSIT, the Centre for Secure Information Technologies, at Queen’s University Belfast is the UK’s innovation and knowledge centre for cybersecurity. It combines world-leading research excellence with translation and innovation driven by collaboration with industry, academic and public sector partners.

CSIT launched the Cyber-AI Hub in 2023 to develop exceptional research, skills and innovation at the intersection of cybersecurity and AI. This new initiative includes a Cyber-AI Doctoral Training Programme with 15 PhD candidates, bursaries for 40 students to join Queen's MSc in Applied Cyber Security or Artificial Intelligence, and a Cyber-AI Technologies Hub involving eight industry partners in collaboration and skills development. The Cyber-AI Hub is funded by the UK Government from the New Deal for Northern Ireland through Innovate UK.

About Rapid7

Rapid7, Inc. (NASDAQ: RPD) is on a mission to create a safer digital world by making cybersecurity simpler and more accessible. We empower security professionals to manage a modern attack surface through our best-in-class technology, leading-edge research, and broad, strategic expertise. Rapid7’s comprehensive security solutions help more than 10,000 global customers unite cloud risk management and threat detection to reduce attack surfaces and eliminate threats with speed and precision. For more information, visit our website, check out our blog, or follow us on LinkedIn or X.


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