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Cyber Security and the Role of Intelligent Systems in Addressing its Challenges

Yaniv Harel, Irad Ben Gal and Yuval Elovici

ACM Transactions on Intelligent Systems and Technology (TIST) - Special Issue: Cyber Security and Regular Papers archive Volume 8 Issue 4, July 2017 Article No. 49

We are living in a unique period of history, and the current technology revolution will
be among the most dramatic societal transformations remembered by humanity. The
important changes associated with the invention of the engine, electricity, and the
printing press gradually transformed society in the western world over a period of over
a hundred years. The changes accompanying the current revolution have significantly
altered the lives of average citizens across the globe in less than a generation. This is
In the past, revolutions spanned decades, enabling the establishment of processes
and systems. For example, a language that supports the new revolution evolves, and
leaders emerge, with the fresh perspective required by the revolutionary changes. New
disciplines are created and new occupations are developed to support the changes. The
present revolution is taking place at such a high speed that such enabling processes
and systems have not yet been established, let alone developed or matured, and they
will continue to be created well into the future.
Over the past three decades, an important new vector of the technology revolution
has emerged: the cyber domain. In particular, the technological aspects of cyber—
such as computer technologies, access to information and systems, greater connectivity
among subsystems, and the combined effect of all these aspects on a growing list of diverse
spheres—expose the world to unprecedented risks. Academia and the intellectual infrastructure associated with the cyber domain are struggling to keep up with the domain’s
rapid pace.
Cryptography is a mature discipline, with strong connections to mathematics and
computer science, which have helped the discipline evolve and develop over the years.
Traditionally, it has been the cyber area most rooted in the academic world. However,
many other technological subjects should also be part of the cyber academic discussion.
Each month, as the cyber effect expands, new aspects of this arena become part of the
cyber theoretical discipline. For example, the autonomous car came on the scene in
recent years [Coppola and Morisio 2016], and it did not take long before a cyber threat
associated with the autonomous car was identified. The immaturity of the discipline
is reflected by the fact that cyber is currently being discussed on many stages and
studied by researchers from diverse disciplines and perspectives. The issue of whether
cyber is a pure discipline or a topic that relates to several disciplines will continue
to be discussed in the coming years. The following special issue includes a collection
of selected papers that cover the diverse cyber domain and how it interfaces with
intelligent systems. The topics were presented at the Tel Aviv Academic Conference
over two successive years. The scope of this special issue is relatively broad, yet there
are many cyber issues that have not been addressed in this edition.