Data and Guns: How AI is Changing the Defence Sector

Data and Guns: How AI is Changing the Defence Sector

A paradigm shift from descriptive on paper analysis to a predictive analysis by leveraging real-time data has enhanced the military exercise considerably. How do you think soldiers would perform when they have the knowledge about the next possible and potential ceasefire beforehand? Artificial intelligence bundled with machine learning algorithms has taken this industry to a valuation of US$2 billion around the world. The developed countries are already up and above with collaborating AI and military.

Sensors, location systems, google earth, machine learning algorithms, data analytics and mining have strengthened the military in a secondary way after weapons. Earlier the information that was stored in logbooks containing image and locations is now perfectly handled by artificial intelligence. Big data is now taken care of and not only this, it is being mined and analyzed to gain insights of any possible imperfection or unusual movements around the border or in the air or the sea.

A nation's cyber capability is also accountable for AI and military to work in cognition. It can lead to calamitous consequences if an unmanned drone fails to function because the software running it was hacked. Combat systems can't afford a technological failure at a deciding juncture. As much as one appreciates the emerging trends in AI, all for the sake of military exercises, one cannot deny that cybersecurity is equally pivotal.

The US Department of Defence has notedly spent US$1.6 billion to cover critical areas such as cyber defense analytics. About €3 billion has been invested by NATO Communication and Information Agency in defense technologies. SIGINT or Signal Intelligence-gathering information via signals is also gaining a lot of momentum. Israel Aerospace Intelligence (IAI) has already excelled the first phase of SIGINT that exploits the big data with real-time processing to achieve desired results. Machines with self-deciding power are the need of the hour but with security functionality.

India is not so far in the AI race, although there is a lot to catch up for the time being. According to the words of experts, the timeline has already been decided upon. For starters, there are various firms aiding the military to carry out their operations. Also, there are many who support the local police to tackle district issues. It is only appreciable that along with the big picture the small players are also equal participants in the game.

Crone Systems, a New Delhi-based firm provide technology to measure, detect and predict border infiltrations. It has serviced to predict the timing and seasonal data for the border infiltration patterns. Another firm called Innefu Labs is working with the BSF and CRPF facilitates to offer analytics services that helps to understand and tackle agitations, protests by reading social media posts, news articles and videos. It gathers the big data and extracts the valuable information out of it and feeds it to the military. The machine learning algorithms help predict future possible agitations. Apart from this, it also detects smuggling via its algorithm.

With 200 and more analytics firms across the nation, we can safely declare that India is progressing in the field. Image sensing via CCTV footage and other data has helped the district police in Bengaluru to track distress calls. Based on the data by the analytics software, the authorities plant more patrolling vans in certain areas. What more, in 2016 Assam government used the GPS data to plan the employment of officers during elections at polling booths. It did save a lot of time and prevented any ruckus, whatsoever from occurring. Bangalore-based Tonbo Imaging provides image system used in missile seekers to detect a target's identification.

The progressive steps in the utilization of AI and machine learning have given a new shape to a country's military services. The defense sector is growing mature by advancing towards AI and for the good. It is only a matter of time that there will be only a few manned planes flying. Also, it is in the near future that AI will see the most investment in the defense sector.

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