Top 3 Insights I Learned at Recent Cybersecurity Events

Events like RSA Conference and Infosecurity Europe provide industry collaboration opportunities required to address the evolving cybersecurity threat landscape.

Michael Adams, Chief Information Security Officer, Zoom

August 9, 2023

3 Min Read
The back of a woman who is speaking at a conference
Source: Matej Kastelic via Alamy Stock Photo

In the dynamic world of cybersecurity, organizations must work together to keep people safe. Attending industry events can provide invaluable insights for cybersecurity professionals striving to achieve this goal.

Attendees not only get a glimpse of new technologies but can also discuss future strategies with partners and customers and build new relationships with emerging vendors.

Here are the most notable trends I gathered from participating in trade shows, like RSA Conference and Infosecurity Europe, as well as engaging in customer conversations and peer interactions.

The Accelerated Rise of Generative AI

It's no secret — artificial intelligence (AI) is top of mind for tech professionals across various industries and verticals including cybersecurity. In fact, according to a recent study by the IBM Institute for Business Value, 34% of respondents are applying AI and automation to assist in vulnerability and patch management.

Generative AI, specifically, has tremendous potential in security. To harness this technology effectively, cybersecurity professionals must establish internal guardrails to mitigate risks and capitalize on the opportunities put forward by generative AI. When incorporating this technology, it is crucial for companies to have a clear understanding of the type of generative AI being employed, the data utilized, and the associated risks for each dataset. Promoting transparency and understanding the destination of your company and customer data is essential.

Some important questions for leaders to consider:

  • Have you provided guidance to your security teams and employee base about whether or how they may use AI tools at work?

  • As a company, are you being transparent with your customers about the use of AI?

With these questions in mind, it's smart for today's organizations to create a company policy around the use of generative AI tools.

It's important to realize that we're in the early exploration stage of generative AI. We're just starting to see and understand its impact. Also, newer startup companies may still be finding their footing when it comes to security and making sure they have the right tools and policies in place to protect customer data. Before you use these tools, take a hard look at what each company has written about its data security and privacy practices.

The Sophistication of Deepfakes

In just a few short years, deepfakes — typically a photo, audio, or video that has been generated or manipulated by AI or machine learning for malicious intent — have also grown in sophistication. Deepfakes are being leveraged in increasingly mature cybersecurity attacks, such as phishing and social engineering attacks.

As the potential downsides of increasingly sophisticated deepfakes can be catastrophic, organizations can make efforts to protect themselves. In the case of unified communications technologies such as videoconferencing, leveraging identity management and end-to-end encryption solutions can help validate participants through cryptographic credentials.

The Rise of Quantum Computing: Can End-to-End Encryption Keep Up?

End-to-end encryption is touted as one of the most secure avenues to share information today. To prepare for the future with quantum computing, the cybersecurity industry might need to adapt or advance encryption methods. If quantum computing becomes a reality in the next few decades, current approaches to encryption could become outdated, creating vulnerability.

As the barriers to making quantum computing a reality are removed, organizations should keep tabs on their encryption standards and requirements, making sure they don't suddenly become obsolete.

Looking Ahead

For cybersecurity leaders, it is mission-critical to avoid getting bogged down by routine tasks. Leaders must always adopt a proactive stance to safeguarding organizations from the rapidly evolving threat landscape.

Industry events like RSA Conference and Infosecurity Europe not only provide a platform to witness the latest innovations and technologies; they also offer a unique chance to engage with some of the brightest minds in the cybersecurity industry. These events foster an environment where professionals can exchange ideas, share experiences, and collaborate on addressing pressing issues.

By actively participating in meaningful conversations with industry colleagues, you can collectively drive progress and shape the future of cybersecurity. Seize these opportunities, forge valuable connections, and work toward a safer digital landscape for all. Together, we can achieve more than we could ever accomplish individually.

About the Author(s)

Michael Adams

Chief Information Security Officer, Zoom

Michael Adams brings nearly 30 years of security and leadership experience as Zoom’s Chief Information Security Officer. Michael joined Zoom in August 2020 and served as Chief Counsel to the COO and CISO while building the company’s insider risk, global intelligence, operations assurance, and security legal programs. A graduate of the US Naval Academy who began his career as an engineer, Michael was previously an adviser to two Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, numerous prominent publicly traded and privately held companies, and the highest levels of the US government. He enjoyed success as an executive at Palantir and as a partner in a major international law firm. Michael and his wife, two children, and Chesapeake Bay retriever live in Charlotte, North Carolina, where they are active members of the community and longtime, die-hard Baltimore Orioles fans.

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