Are AI powered scams a new frontier in cyber security? 

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As the years roll by, cyber security threats are evolving. From simple phishing emails to sophisticated ransomware attacks, the threats we face today have come a long way since the beginning of technology. 

However, we are now on the brink of facing a new and formidable challenge: AI-powered scams. 

The integration of artificial intelligence into the arsenal of cyber criminals is not only amplifying the scale and complexity of attacks but also making them harder to detect and prevent. 

In this blog post, I will delve into the mechanics of AI-powered scams, their potential impacts, and the measures we can take to protect ourselves. 

Understanding what an AI-powered scam is 

AI-powered scams utilise machine learning algorithms and artificial intelligence to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of traditional scam techniques. These scams are not a distant future threat, they’re already here. The thing that separates AI-powered scams from conventional ones are their ability to: 

  1. Personalised attacks

AI can analyse vast amounts of data to create highly personalised messages. By taking information from social media, public records, and other data sources, AI can tailor scams to target individuals with specific details, making them even more convincing.

  1. Automated social engineering 

AI can simulate human-like interactions, allowing scammers to engage in real-time conversations with potential victims and come across like genuine people. Chatbots and voice synthesis tools can mimic the speech patterns and tones of trusted individuals, deceiving victims into handing over their sensitive information. 

  1. Scaled attacks 

With AI, cybercriminals can automate and scale their operations, launching millions of attacks simultaneously. With such a huge reach, it’s hard for traditional security methods to keep up. 

  1. Evolving and adapting 

AI systems can learn from unsuccessful attacks, continuously refining their strategies. This adaptability makes AI-powered scams more resilient and harder to defend against, as they’re constantly evolving to work around the mistakes. 

Real-world examples of AI-powered scams 

There are many scams that are currently harnessing AI to have the biggest impact. These include: 

Deepfake scams 

Deepfake technology uses AI to create highly realistic audio and video, convincing enough that it’s hard to decipher what’s real and what isn’t. In one notable case, cybercriminals used a deepfake audio clip to impersonate the CEO of a UK-based energy firm. The scammers convinced a senior executive to transfer €220,000 to a fraudulent account, believing they were following the CEO’s instructions. The deepfake was so convincing that it fooled the executive, despite the fact that he had even met and spoken with the real CEO. 


AI chatbots can engage in real-time conversations with potential victims, using natural language processing to understand and respond to inquiries. In one instance, an AI chatbot posing as a bank representative successfully extracted sensitive information from customers by guiding them through a series of seemingly legitimate security questions. This level of interaction makes it much harder for victims to recognise the scam, as it’s impossible to set the two apart. 

What impact can AI-powered scams have? 

Much like a cyber attack that isn’t powered by AI, AI attacks pose significant risks to individuals, businesses, and society as a whole.

Financial loss 

AI-powered scams can lead to substantial financial losses for both individuals and organisations. The ability to personalise these scams increases the likelihood of success, resulting in more victims and more money stolen. 

Reputational damage 

Businesses targeted by AI-powered scams can suffer severe reputational damage. Customers and partners may lose trust in a company’s ability to protect their data, leading to long-term negative effects on the business.

Weaknesses in cyber security

The advanced nature of AI-powered scams makes them more challenging to detect and mitigate. Traditional security measures, like antivirus software, may not be sufficient to combat these sophisticated threats.

How to defend against AI-powered scams 

Given the sophisticated nature of AI-powered scams, it is crucial to adopt a multi-layered approach to cybersecurity. To create the multi-layers, SupPortal suggests implementing a variety of the following: 

Cyber security with SupPortal 

At SupPortal, we work with small businesses to prioritise their cyber safety, training their staff to ensure a high level of cyber-awareness. 

Whether it’s a security breach from cyber criminals, viruses, malware or even an accidental employee breach, we can help. We provide a range of CSaaS solutions including Managed Cyber Security subscriptions, Cyber Security Assessments, Cyber Security Awareness Training, Cyber Incident Response and Disaster Recovery.

If you’d like to talk further about how SupPortal can help keep you and your business safe, chat to us.

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