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Flerspråkig naturlig språkbehandling (NLP) kan bryta ner språkbarriärer


Multilingual Natural Language Processing (NLP) Can Break Down Language Barriers

In addition to being tools to enable enhanced human-machine interactions, natural language processing is now increasingly becoming a tool for breaking down language barriers between humans.

Natural Language Processing (NLP) has generated quite a buzz for the large-scale impact it is creating across industries. It has spawned numerous transformative applications that allow computers to understand naturally-spoken or written human language. From personal AI assistants like Siri and Alexa to accessibility tools like speech-to-text and text-to-speech converters, NLP applications have paved the way for improved human-machine interactions. It enables users to ask questions regarding products, services or any other question that they wish to ask in their everyday language — as long as they do so in English. However, there are 7139 languages in the world, out of which the UN recognizes 6 languages as official.

The main hurdle here is that the research in NLP is highly biased towards the English language as it is the most widely preferred and used language for academic and business purposes worldwide.  There is a dire need for multilingual NLP to break down the barrier between high-resource and low-resource languages. NLP also needs to understand contextual words and ambiguity in the languages. To overcome these challenges, researchers are showing increasing interest in Multilingual NLP. Put simply; multilingual NLP is a type of NLP that uses machine learning to understand commands in different languages.

How Multilingual NLP Can Break Down Language Barriers

There have been recent advancements in building models which will help to cater to a diverse spectrum of languages, helping researchers overcome the biggest causes of language barriers.


1. Understanding Search Queries in Multiple Languages

Google rolled out its BERT algorithm highlighting its importance for understanding contextual language in queries and content. Its usage is for conversational search. Processing 11 different natural language tasks, BERT also helps in text classification, and next sentence prediction and can scan entire articles automatically and classify organizations, places, and important people mentioned in the article (also known as Named Entity Recognition). 

BERT is an open-source framework of machine learning for NLP. It is designed to help computers comprehend and identify the context of ambiguous or masked words and languages in a sentence. It is pre-trained with Next Sentence Prediction and Masked Language Modeling (MLM). A multilingual BERT is an extension of this model and is trained in 104 languages. It is used for answering questions, generating automated responses, and for abstract summarization.

2. Interpreting Low Resource Languages

AfriBERTa is a transformer-based model for multilingual applications trained to analyze and understand 11 African (low-resource) languages. It is being used in text categorization and answering questions in low-resource African languages.

3. Translating Between Multiple Pairs of Languages

Introduced by Facebook, AI M2M-100 (Many to Many) is the first multilingual machine translation model that doesn’t rely on English Data and translates between any pair of 100 languages. It is trained on 2200 language directions and multilingual English-centric models. Prior to M2M, translating data from Spanish to German would require the models to be trained on Spanish to English and English to German as the data was heavily trained on English. The new AI introduced by Facebook directly trains Spanish to German data to provide an enhanced meaning.

As a key branch of AI, NLP enables computers to read and respond by replicating the human ability to process natural language. Right from grammar checking to speech-to-text recognition and searching for information on search engines, NLP has proven to be useful in many daily applications. In an increasingly globalized world, the applications of multilingual NLP will lead to greater and greater impact with every passing day.



Om e-postsäkerhet i hybridarbetets tid


Cloud Computing News

With remote working the future for so many global workforces – or at least some kind of hybrid arrangement – is there an impact on email security we are all missing? Oliver Paterson, director of product management at VIPRE Security, believes so.

“The timeframe that people expect now for you to reply to things is shortened massively,” says Paterson. “This puts additional stress and pressure on individuals, which can then also lead to further mistakes. [Employees] are not as aware if they get an email with a link coming in – and they’re actually more susceptible to clicking on it.”

The cybercriminal’s greatest friend is human error, and distraction makes for a perfect bedfellow. The remote working calendar means that meetings are now held in virtual rooms, instead of face-to-face. A great opportunity for a quick catch up on a few emails during a spot of downtime, perhaps? It’s also a great opportunity for an attacker to make you fall for a phishing attack.

“It’s really about putting in the forefront there that email is the major first factor when we talk about data breaches, and anything around cyberattacks and ransomware being deployed on people’s machines,” Paterson says around education. “We just need to be very aware that even though we think these things are changing, [you] need to add a lot more security, methods and the tactics that people are using to get into your business is still very similar.

“The attacks may be more sophisticated, but the actual attack vector is the same as it was 10-15 years ago.”

This bears true in the statistics. The Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG) found in its Phishing Activity Trends Report (pdf) in February that attacks hit an all-time high in 2021. Attacks had tripled since early 2020 – in other words, since the pandemic began. 

VIPRE has many solutions to this age-old problem, and the email security product side of the business comes primarily under Paterson’s remit. One such product is VIPRE SafeSend, which focuses on misaddressed emails and prevents data leakage. “Everyone’s sent an email to the wrong person at some point in their life,” says Paterson. “It just depends how serious that’s been.”

Paterson notes one large FMCG brand, where a very senior C-level executive had the same name as someone else in the business much lower down. Naturally, plenty of emails went to the wrong place. “You try and get people to be uber-careful, but we’ve got technology solutions to help with those elements as well now,” says Paterson. “It’s making sure that businesses are aware of that, then also having it in one place.”

Another part of the product portfolio is with EDR (endpoint detection and response). The goal for VIPRE is to ‘take the complexities out of EDR management for small to medium-sized businesses and IT teams.’ Part of this is understanding what organisations really want. 

The basic knowledge is there, as many organisational surveys will show. Take a study from the Enterprise Security Group (ESG) released in October in terms of ransomware preparedness. Respondents cited network security (43%), backup infrastructure security (40%), endpoint (39%), email (36%) and data encryption (36%) as key prevention areas. Many security vendors offer this and much more – but how difficult is it to filter out the noise?

“People understand they need an endpoint solution, and an email security solution. There’s a lot of competitors out there and they’re all shouting about different things,” says Paterson. “So it’s really getting down to the nitty gritty of what they actually need as a business. That’s where we at VIPRE try to make it as easy as possible for clients. 

“A lot of companies do EDR at the moment, but what we’ve tried to do is get it down to the raw elements that every business will need, and maybe not all the bells and whistles that probably 99% of organisations aren’t going to need,” Paterson adds.

“We’re very much a company that puts a lot of emphasis on our clients and partners, where we treat everyone as an individual business. We get a lot of comments [from customers] that some of the biggest vendors in there just treat them as a number.”

Paterson is speaking at the Cyber Security & Cloud Expo Global, in London on December 1-2 around the rising threat of ransomware, and how the security industry evolves alongside this threat. Having a multi-layered approach will be a cornerstone of Paterson’s message, and his advice to businesses is sound.

“Take a closer look at those areas, those threat vectors, the way that they are coming into the business, and make sure that you are putting those industry-level systems in place,” he says. “A lot of businesses can get complacent and just continue renewing the same thing over and over again, without realising there are new features and additions. Misdelivery of email is a massive one – I would say the majority of businesses don’t have anything in place for it.

“Ask ‘where are the risk areas for your business?’ and understand those more, and then make sure to put those protection layers in place to help with things like ransomware attacks and other elements.”

(Photo by Cytonn Photography på Unsplash)

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