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  • Wise Words From CISOs at RSAC 2015

    by Tony Kontzer on April 23, 2015

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    In the first few days of this year's RSA Conference, I made it a point to hear as many information security executives speak as possible. Thankfully, there have been a number of opportunities to do so. I've always felt that the most interesting stories and perspectives come from customers. They tend to speak plain English because they have to appeal to a non-technical audience. Vendors are much more interested in technical buyers and are always trying to sell something, which tends to get in…

  • Pentagon CIO Discusses His Security Plans

    by Tony Kontzer on April 23, 2015

    No one in the room was surprised when Terry Halvorsen, CIO of the U.S. Department of Defense, said during a RSA Conference forum session on Wednesday, "We're not easy to work with." With 1.4 million active-duty military personal to support, a roster of 500,000 contractors, and a requirement to answer to Congress, the DoD is, to put it mildly, a unique enterprise. "I’m Fortune Zero," Halvorsen…

  • RSAC 2015 Experts on Responding to a Cyber Crisis

    by Tony Kontzer on April 23, 2015

    Security professionals are at war, a panel of corporate security executives said at the RSA Conference in San Francisco Thursday. Granted, the man leading the discussion was Mike McConnell, who, as former U.S. director of national intelligence, can be excused for using war analogies. The discussion was littered with battle references that made it clear military-style thinking is prevalent when…

  • RSAC 2015 Daily Recap: Thursday

    by Fahmida Y. Rashid on April 23, 2015

    RSA Conference goes the full week, with the closing keynote on Friday, but for many people, today is the de facto last day. While there are plenty of sessions on tap for Friday morning, the expo hall closed this afternoon. Many of the attendees, as well as members of the press, head home Thursday. If things went well, they would have a lot of ideas brimming in their heads about things they…

  • Private Sector Cooperation in Cyber Threat Intelligence

    by Rita S. Heims on April 22, 2015

    Devices provide imperfect information security protection, even if they are considered acceptable for purposes of satisfying a legal obligation to follow industry security standards. An advanced warning system that predicts the likelihood of cyber attack may ultimately be more effective and less costly if well designed and executed. Private organizations have tremendous technical capacity to…

  • RSAC Reflects Changes in Industry Attitudes, Focus

    by Tony Kontzer on April 22, 2015

    This is my fourth RSA Conference, which doesn't exactly make me a cagey old veteran, but it's just enough history to have a sense of how the gathering has changed in recent years. (All of you who've been coming since the 1990s should probably stop reading before you start snickering derisively like those two old dudes from the balcony on The Muppet Show.) The changes from my first RSAC in 2010 are…

  • RSAC 2015 Daily Recap: Wednesday

    by Fahmida Y. Rashid on April 22, 2015

    Day 3. Wednesday. Hump day! We are midway through RSA Conference, and there is still so much left to do. I spoke with an attendee who boasted he's been hitting over 10,000 steps on his FitBit everyday. I wonder what the average number of steps are among our attendees. Hope everyone has been eating healthy and drinking. We are exercising both our minds and bodies this week. Every day, sessions are…

  • Give Boards Metrics They Can Actually Understand

    by Tony Kontzer on April 22, 2015

    Troy Braban was only half-joking with this slide he shared at the RSA Conference in San Francisco: "83.45% of metric presentations at 96.82% of security conferences suck." Fortunately for the the more than 500 attendees who packed his session to hear about security metrics boards actually care about, Braban, the CISO of Australia Post, wasn't talking about himself. The problem most CISOs have in…

  • Learning About New Attack Techniques at RSAC 2015

    by Tony Kontzer on April 22, 2015

    A funny thing happened on my way to a session at the RSA Conference Tuesday. Long before I got there, and as I was checking messages on my phone, I nearly walked right into the back of a line. But for what? There were hundreds of people standing in line in the concourse, and hundreds of others rifling through their conference guides trying to figure out what all of the hubbub was. I smelled a…

  • How to Go From Techie to CISO

    by Tony Kontzer on April 21, 2015

    It hit me like a load of bricks Monday at the RSA Conference in San Francisco: CISOs are following in the footsteps of their CIO brethren. CIOs translated technology's rise in strategic importance to raise their profile within the enterprise. Similarly, CISOs are now taking advantage of the increased scrutiny on the organization's security to raise their profile in the business and gain entry…

  • RSA's Amit Yoran: Security is Stumbling Around in the Dark

    by Tony Kontzer on April 21, 2015

    Amit Yoran clearly knows a good metaphor when he sees one. Or in this case, doesn’t see one. Yoran, who was named RSA Security's president last fall, took the stage at the RSA Conference in San Francisco Tuesday to deliver his first opening keynote. In the dark. And he let the audience of thousands sit there, in the pitch black, for an excruciatingly long moment before offering the first glimpses…

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