Analytics
9/20/2013
05:49 PM
Tim Wilson
Tim Wilson
Commentary
Connect Directly
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

(ISC)2 Congress Addresses Security's People Problems

Annual (ISC)2 conference puts technology aside to focus on the human side of security

There are many conferences and get-togethers around cybersecurity every year, but only a few would be considered "mandatory" by the whole community of security professionals. The RSA Conference, held each year in San Francisco, offers the industry's biggest exhibit floor and a chance to see security products in action. Black Hat USA, held annually in Las Vegas, is where the smartest and best security researchers come to reveal vulnerabilities and share knowledge on potential threats.

While these events offer a depth of technological insight unmatched in IT security, though, they don't necessarily focus on the "people" issues faced every day by the average security professional. That's why I'll be in Chicago next week for the third annual (ISC)2 Security Congress, the yearly meeting of the world's biggest cybersecurity professionals' organization.

(ISC)2's Congress -- held concurrently with ASIS, the granddaddy of physical security conferences -- doesn't have an overriding technological "theme" because it isn't focused on technology. Its focus is discussing the day-to-day, nonsexy issues that all security professionals grapple with, such as staffing, hiring, management, and administration. Where other events might have more of a "show" of leading-edge technology or new threats, (ISC)2 is more like a water-cooler conversation among colleagues faced with similar security problems and issues.

Meetings of security professional organizations, such as (ISC)2, ISSA, and ISACA, represent the "everyman" infosec pro, who may not always be up on the most current products or attacks because he or she is fighting the everyday fires of the enterprise. These are people who work in the trenches of security and are limited by time, budgets, and short staffing. They spend a frustrating amount of time in meetings, arguing with top executives or end users who don't understand the dangers their systems face every day. Their job is not to be on the leading edge, but to get their data secure as best they can with what they've got.

This year, many of (ISC)2's sessions will focus on how to do more with less, how to train staffers and end users to improve enterprise defenses, and how to make tough decisions about security in a rapidly changing environment where the needs of the business and the growing range of threats often outweigh the security department's resources.

If the security industry is to progress, it will occasionally have to step away from technological problems and wrestle with some of these types of people problems. How to fund, find, and keep good security people. How to teach end users not to click on suspicious attachments. How to build security policies that are realistic for the business, yet also enforceable by monitoring and security controls.

These issues won't be solved at the conference next week, but it's good to see security professionals working on them together. Cybercriminals are famous for sharing (and stealing) each other's ideas and techniques, and that sharing has helped them to get an edge on enterprise defenders. Anytime security professionals get together to share their knowledge -- whether in small groups or at a major conference -- it improves the enterprise's chances of successfully fighting back. Tim Wilson is Editor in Chief and co-founder of Dark Reading.com, UBM Tech's online community for information security professionals. He is responsible for managing the site, assigning and editing content, and writing breaking news stories. Wilson has been recognized as one ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Thomas Ianuzzi
50%
50%
Thomas Ianuzzi,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/27/2013 | 3:23:41 PM
re: (ISC)2 Congress Addresses Security's People Problems
I am delighted to see you highlighting the most common problem I've seen in security over the years. While the technical problems are constantly are a moving target, the people problems are the gift that keeps on giving to attackers.
Tom Ianuzzi
President
Information Security Consultants, Inc.
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon
Current Issue
Dark Reading Must Reads - September 25, 2014
Dark Reading's new Must Reads is a compendium of our best recent coverage of identity and access management. Learn about access control in the age of HTML5, how to improve authentication, why Active Directory is dead, and more.
Flash Poll
Threat Intel Today
Threat Intel Today
The 397 respondents to our new survey buy into using intel to stay ahead of attackers: 85% say threat intelligence plays some role in their IT security strategies, and many of them subscribe to two or more third-party feeds; 10% leverage five or more.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2003-1598
Published: 2014-10-01
SQL injection vulnerability in log.header.php in WordPress 0.7 and earlier allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary SQL commands via the posts variable.

CVE-2011-4624
Published: 2014-10-01
Cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability in facebook.php in the GRAND FlAGallery plugin (flash-album-gallery) before 1.57 for WordPress allows remote attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via the i parameter.

CVE-2012-0811
Published: 2014-10-01
Multiple SQL injection vulnerabilities in Postfix Admin (aka postfixadmin) before 2.3.5 allow remote authenticated users to execute arbitrary SQL commands via (1) the pw parameter to the pacrypt function, when mysql_encrypt is configured, or (2) unspecified vectors that are used in backup files gene...

CVE-2014-2640
Published: 2014-10-01
Cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability in HP System Management Homepage (SMH) before 7.4 allows remote attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via unspecified vectors.

CVE-2014-2641
Published: 2014-10-01
Cross-site request forgery (CSRF) vulnerability in HP System Management Homepage (SMH) before 7.4 allows remote authenticated users to hijack the authentication of unspecified victims via unknown vectors.

Best of the Web
Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
Chris Hadnagy, who hosts the annual Social Engineering Capture the Flag Contest at DEF CON, will discuss the latest trends attackers are using.