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Cybersecurity at the Core
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User Rank: Author
11/26/2018 | 12:54:09 PM
Re: Why CYBER security?
I've heard the "Cybersecurity" vs "Information Security" debate and know some people think there is real value in sorting it out.  However, I don't think this is where we should be spending time.  I tend to fall into the camp that thinks the train has left the station on this.  Why? Because our Boards and the C-Suites are hearing "Cyber" and that is what has them concerned.  From regulatory bodies, to news articles and their own peers it is "cyber" they are being bombarded with.  Therefore, I tend to think there is more value in using that term then in trying to get them, or our community, to use another one.  That said, if "information security" works for your C-suite, run with it. Where I think the danger comes is when experts paint the issue as a technical one only, or when they allow the belief that only the security team can or should address it.  The security team should be the source of the strategy, but that strategy should be looking at what the whole organization needs to do, not just those who work for the CISO. 

I am a strong believer of transparency and making it clear what the security team can and should do, but also what we can't do and where the rest of the organization needs to help if we are to succeed.   When we are able to show those limitations then I think it becomes easier to address the cyber = technology = I don't understand it = someone else's problem.  That is why I like painting this as risk management.  In most, though certainly not all, organizations when a corporate risk is identified, and the treatment plan is agreed to, there are actions in that plan which end up being the responsibility of teams across the business to deliver.   Example: If there is a regulatory risk about the disposal of certain wastes then product production, procurement, facilities and the compliance team are all involved in the treatment plan for that risk.  Business get that, yet too often in cyber, or information security, it falls exclusively on the security team.   Sometimes that is the business failing to understand the team sport we are playing, sometimes it is the security leadership thinking they have to do it by themselves.  Regardless of the reason, if we don't change, we will fail.  

What's more is in many cases the security program will costs less and will be more effective when the treatment plan involves more than just the security team.  Often, security teams try to compensate with more staff or technology when partnerships are more effective.  I've kept my own team relatively small by the standards of most companies our size, but in partnering across the business with champions who are organic to others, I have more than 4X as many security representatives, and growing, in various departments than in my own team.  The best part is many of those are in the teams that actually do own the assets that affect our risk.   Those champions are the only way we could have effectively scaled, helped influence local culture and continue to drive the behaviors we decided as a company we want.  However, without buy in from across the business segments we could never have implemented such a large champion program and it would have taken us much longer at much greater cost to have impact.  I also doubt that impact would have been as meaningful.  
User Rank: Strategist
11/21/2018 | 3:46:54 AM
Why CYBER security?
Surely part of the problem stems from the name. To many (most?) people outside of our bubble cyber=technology=I don't understand it=someone else's problem.

As someone said on another post "cyber" scores lots of ninja points, but I'm unconvinced moving to cyber security from information security actually moved our cause along very far, although i'm sure it's resulted in many more sales of shiny things.

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