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Nicola Grandis, ASC27: “filling the gap between humans and machines is how we contribute to the development of humankind”

With the switch to remote work, the need to reshape or improve business models increased, and companies like ASC27 made the process easier through the adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) solutions.

As the world is becoming more digitized, organizations are looking for ways to improve their cybersecurity posture and simplify business processes. With the help of AI services, companies are able to make faster and more accurate decisions.

To learn more about AI solutions and their operational advantages, Cybernews invited Nicola Grandis, the CEO of ASC27 – a company that specializes in AI and cybersecurity.

Let’s go back to the very beginning. How did the idea of ASC27 come about?

ASC27 began its journey in the early days of the pandemic – March 2020. In perspective, our new company was born in the midst of a life-changing event for everyone, and we can now look at it as an opportunity to reshape the way we intended to do business. The transition to AI began in the previous company around 2014 – we were focused on cybersecurity, and we fell deeply in love with artificial intelligence. The pandemic boosted the process of reshaping our goals.

It is evident that AI is an important part of ASC27. Can you tell us more about the ways you’re making use of it?

Everything starts with a simple plain question: why should we use artificial intelligence to solve the issue at hand? Thinking about this simple and plain question allows us to start building our solution with strong fundamentals, leading us to tackle even the most complex challenges. This quest for meaning sparks a process made of a deep understanding of the tasks at hand, driving the solution development process in a very effective way. From our point of view, AI is a fulfilling path of continuous learning and improvement, magnificently fitting our company vision.

You state that ASC27 helps fill the gap between humans and machines. Would you like to share more about your vision?

Filling the gap between humans and machines is how we contribute to the development of humankind. Building effective AI is how we allow humans to focus on what matters most, in any line of business and in our personal lives. Think about highly repetitive tasks, where concentration and precision are required: what if you could have an assistant dealing with such repetitions while you can focus 100% on those tasks requiring your human factor?

Did you notice any new cyberthreats emerge as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic?

The COVID-19 pandemic brought a profound worldwide change into our working lifestyle – working from home, on this scale, is unprecedented, as unprecedented is the ability to do so.

But not every organization was ready to take this step so rapidly, leveraging the ability of cybercriminals to harm our remote workspaces. In my opinion, cybercrime-as-a-service is the most dangerous and fast-growing threat we have to confront. Interpol has identified it in the “Global landscape on COVID-19 Cyberthreats”, released in April 2020, as one of the expected developments – two years later, I can see it clearly as the number one threat.

Talking about the future, where can we expect to see AI used more widely in the upcoming years?

Let’s look at AI as a way to get better results in any line of work: we are moving towards a data-driven society. Our cities, our homes, and our workplaces are increasingly filled with devices that are able to produce valuable data; harnessing this enormous amount of data is the most critical challenge ahead, as a better understanding of the dynamics pictured by such data would enable a profound transformation in our societies.

In your opinion, which industries should be especially concerned with implementing new and innovative technologies?

As we discussed previously, AI can become part of any industry process: we provide solutions in many fields, such as medicine, manufacturing, agriculture, smart cities, safety and security, defense, and media, and we are working to widen the markets we reach. In my own opinion, AI in public transportation is one of the most promising industries at sight, embracing many potential applications for AI solutions for the design of the best routes and the best timetables, to ensure safety and security onboard and also to assist the drivers.

Besides AI, what other new technology are you excited to see become commonplace?

I am excited to see how AI is enabling new and emergent technologies to become widely used with a purpose.

As technology advances, new threats arise too. What cybersecurity measures must users have in place?

Cybersecurity starts with humans. Building secure and reliable cyberspace begins with the good practices adopted by each user: the first line of defense is building a culture of cybersecurity, protecting our online activities with the same care we use to protect our homes. The pandemic made small everyday actions even more important in terms of security as we moved our workplaces into our homes. A solid password management strategy is the most obvious starting point, but it is not enough: safely living in cyberspace is linked to preparedness: be aware, plan, and execute by choosing the best practices and the best set of tools to protect our valuable data.

Tell us, what’s next for ASC27?

We are very happy with all our achievements, but we’re still very hungry! The next two years will be defining for our company as we expand our reach beyond Europe and engage in new challenges.

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