CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast
Discussions, tips, and debates from security practitioners and vendors on how to work better together to improve security for themselves and everyone else.

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/archaeologists-dig-up-the-remains-of-an-optimistic-ciso/)

It it believed that in ancient times cybersecurity was successfully fought with a glass half full approach. Today's pessimistic CISOs have yet to confirm the findings.

This week's episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest is George Finney (@wellawaresecure), CISO, Southern Methodist University and author of "Well Aware: The Nine Cybersecurity Habits to Protect Your Future".

Thanks to our sponsor, Netskope.

Netskope

The Netskope security cloud provides unrivaled visibility and real-time data and threat protection when accessing cloud services, websites, and private apps from anywhere, on any device. Only Netskope understands the cloud and takes a data-centric approach that empowers security teams with the right balance of protection and speed they need to secure their digital transformation journey.

On this week's episode

Vendors have questions our CISOs have answers

Neil Saltman of Anomali runs a CISO meetup group and he asks, "A common topic is CISOs going back to platform vendors versus best of breed because they are overwhelmed. When do you buy best of breed vs. just add it to the stack from Microsoft or other large vendors… When I worked at Bromium I had a CISO tell me 'I’ll buy your product when Microsoft buys you.'"

Mike Johnson leans more to best-of-breed or in some cases build it yourself. Can Mike sympathize with these other CISOs and what would his situation have to be to make a platform play?

What I learned from a CISO

One of the main tenets of George's new book, "Well Aware: The Nine Cybersecurity Habits to Protect Your Future" is that optimists outperform pessimists in productivity, wealth, and longevity. The "Department of No" cybersecurity people are just hurting themselves. You argue that the more positive attitude can be garnered by learning from people who have successfully protected their communities. What are examples of watching another's success, and what can you learn?

What's Worse?!

Both are going to cause problems. It's tough to say which one's worse.

It's time for "Ask a CISO"

We've got a request for career advice, from an anonymous listener. We'll call him Steve. Steve has been with his company 14 years and they were recently acquired and the new company was calling the shots. After the acquisition, the CISO and Steve were working on bringing the merged companies up to compliance standards and dealing with audits: SOC 2, Sarbanes-Oxley, PCI, etc. CISO was planning on leaving the company in 2021 and grooming Steve to replace him. Then COVID hit and the company gave the CISO a beautiful severance package leaving Steve with all the CISO's responsibilities, but not the title change or salary. Steve asked the CIO about plans to replace the CISO and the CIO said Steve could apply once the position was announced. That was 5 months ago. Steve likes his job and the people he's working with but he's frustrated with no clear vision of future plans. We offer up some advice for Steve.

What’s the best way to handle this

Can we opt-in to cybersecurity awareness? At one of our live shows I asked the audience, "Who has gone through security awareness training?" Every hand went up with a loud audible groan. Most of us would like to opt-out of this mandated training. What if our coworkers could be enticed to opt-in? It's the end of cybersecurity awareness month. What have you done or seen others do that's actually worked? And now the far trickier question, what has worked over a long time?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_10-27-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/can-a-robot-be-concerned-about-your-privacy/)

I want AI to be efficient, but I also want my space.

This week's episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest is Rebecca Weekly (@rebeccalipon), senior director of hyperscale strategy and execution, senior principal engineer, Intel.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Intel.

Intel

Intel’s new suite of security features in the upcoming Xeon Scalable platform improves data confidentiality and integrity in a world that increasingly relies on it. Features like Intel SGX further enable confidential computing scenarios — crucial for organizations in regulated industries to meet growing security requirements and protect sensitive data.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now

"The lack of women in cybersecurity leaves the online world at greater risk," stated Naomi Schalit of The Conversation. Mollie Chard of Capgemini shared the article that generated a lot of conversation. Naomi hit many issues we've discussed before like diversity offers different viewpoints, which is critical for building a cybersecurity program.

I would like to focus on the dynamic of the security team. I've been in testosterone-fueled environments and things change dramatically when just one woman enters the room. And it changes even more when there are more women. What is that dynamic, why is it valuable, and what's the danger of the all-male environment?

Well that didn’t work out the way we expected

At the end of every show I ask our guests, "Are you hiring?" And prior to COVID, almost everyone said desperately, "YES, we're hiring." That has changed dramatically for the worse since COVID started. Emma Brighton has a story on InfoSecurity Magazine about the real shortage that's happening. Problems she points to are the need to secure more communications channels, security people being offloaded to do IT support, and the competition for skilled talent. What is COVID doing to our security environment and our staff?

What's Worse?!

Everyone in the loop or out of the loop?

Please, Enough. No, More.

Today's topic is security on the chipset. We have never talked about this on the show, but now we've got someone from Intel and it seemed appropriate now would be the time to do just that. What have we heard enough about chip-level security, and what would we like to hear a lot more?

Are we having communication issues

Will the fight to maintain privacy always be in conflict? The people who collect data always want more information so they can get greater insights. Outside of regulations, they have no incentive to maintain privacy. As we're collecting more and more information automatically and artificial intelligence systems are making decisions for us, can AI systems be made privacy aware while still being effective at gaining insights? What would that even look like?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_10-20-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/bonus-episode:-innovators-spotlight/)

What makes a security solution innovative? Where do you think security desperately needs innovation? And what do you look for in a security vendor's presentation?

On this very special bonus episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast, I invite two special guests, David Tyburski, CISO, Wynn Resorts and Matt Crouse (@mattcrouse), CISO, Taco Bell to answer that very question AND determine if any of the three competing security vendors during the Evanta 2020 Global CISO Virtual Executive Summit were in fact innovative.

Our three competitors (and also sponsors) were:

ZeroNorth

John Worrall (@jworrall), CEO, ZeroNorth

Okera

Nick Halsey (@nickhalsey), CEO, Okera

Blue Lava

Demetrios Lazarikos, CEO and co-founder, Blue Lava

Thanks to these sponsors and Evanta for their support on this episode.

Evanta

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_-_Bonus_Episode_rev1.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/a-phish-so-insidious-you-cant-help-but-be-jealous/)

Wait, that's a phish even I'd fall for.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Matt Crouse, CISO, Taco Bell.

Huge thanks to our sponsor, CloudKnox.

CloudKnox

CloudKnox Security is the market leader within Gartner’s newly defined Cloud Infrastructure Entitlement Management (CIEM) segment. CloudKnox transforms how organizations implement the principle of least privilege in the cloud and empowers security teams to proactively address accidental and malicious credential misuse by continuously detecting and mitigating insider risks.

On this week's episode

Here’s some surprising research

Here's a depressing statistic. Ninety four percent of security and business leaders say they've suffered "one or more business-impacting cyberattacks in the last year — that is, an attack resulting in a loss of customer, employee, or other confidential data; interruption of day-to-day operations; ransomware payout; financial loss or theft; and/or theft of intellectual property." This according to a Forrester Consulting study sponsored by Tenable. Do we accept the sobering fact that a business-impacting cyberattack is an annual inevitability? And if so, what percentage of a CISO's job is putting systems in place to minimize damage, and what are ways you do that?

If you're not paranoid yet here’s your chance

Get ready for a really nasty phishing attack. Craig Hays, bug bounty hunter particularly interested in phishing, tells a story of a wormable phish that after taking over one user's email account began to reply to legitimate email threads from that account. The phisher would actually read the thread and create a relevant response, but with a phishing link which would then compromise another user's email account in the same way. And the phisher would repeat the process from yet another account, causing this wormable phish to spread not just through the initially targeted company, but through their partners, suppliers, and their partners and suppliers.

At the time Craig's company didn't have multi-factor authentication (MFA) implemented to which Craig realizes that would stop such an attack. Yet, in the end he was very impressed with this type of attack because it has so many indicators of legitimacy. Have we experienced a similar attack and/or do we have a "favorite" phishing attack in terms of its effectiveness?

What's Worse?!

Audit season is about to begin.

What would you advise?

On the Cybersecurity subreddit, GenoSecurity asks, "What types of projects would look good on a resume since I have no work experience. I am also open to projects that might not look as good but are good for beginners since I’m currently working on my Net+ cert."

Close your eyes and visualize the perfect engagement

Last Friday we had an online after party using a new tool called Toucan which simulates a real party in a virtual setting. We've also used a platform called Icebreaker that allows for one-on-one random meetups. And last week I participated in a table top cyberthreat exercise with Bruce Potter of Expel and Shmoocon that ran like a Dungeons and Dragons role playing game. All were fun and had their value. Since the launch of the pandemic, how have we been able to socialize and stay connected in fun and unique ways?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_10-13-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/whether-its-vulnerabilities-or-children-we-like-to-pick-favorites/)

While you do have to claim all of your vulnerabilities and your children, you don't have to like all of them.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest this week is Ben Sapiro, global CISO, Great-West LifeCo.

HUGE thanks to our sponsor, Kenna Security.

Kenna Security

With Kenna Security, companies efficiently manage the right level of risk for their business. Our Modern Vulnerability Management model eliminates the friction between Security and IT teams about what to patch, providing clear prioritization based on real-time threat intelligence and guidance applied to each customer’s unique environment across infrastructure, applications and IoT.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now

Do you have a clear overall picture of how you're protecting your environment? The Cyber Defense Matrix, an open source tool created by Sounil Yu, a former guest, offers a simple five-by-five grid with the x-axis being the five operational functions of the NIST Cybersecurity Framework and the Y-axis are the five asset classes cyber professionals are trying to secure (devices, applications, networks, data, users). The idea is you are supposed to fill in all 25 squares as best as possible to see where you might have gaps in your security program. Ross Young, CISO, Caterpillar Financial Services Corporation, and a recent guest on this show, has adapted the matrix, by changing the Y-axis to four risks of phishing, ransomware, web app attacks, third party risks.

So what's a better way of building out at your security program: by the assets that you're trying to protect or the risks that you're facing? What are the pros and cons of each method?

Can you change Mike's mind

On a previous show Mike said he is NOT a fan of security through obscurity. Utku Sen of HackerOne argues that security through obscurity is underrated. His argument was that adding "obscurity" is often costless and it adds another layer in your defense in depth program. It is far from bulletproof, but obscurity reduces the likelihood which lowers your overall risk. Examples he included were obfuscating your code in your program, and/or using random variables in the code.

Can we change Mike's mind? Is there a level of security through obscurity he has deployed and/or would consider?

What's Worse?!

What's better? Good and bad data or no data?

Please, enough! No, more.

Today's topic is vulnerability management, or specifically, vulnerability remediation. What have you heard enough of on vulnerability management, and what would you like to hear a lot more?

Question for the board

What misconceptions does the board have of the role of the CISO? On LinkedIn, Amar Singh of Cyber Management Alliance Limited, listed off what the CISO is and, isn't, and what inappropriate demands are made on them. He said the CISO is
-NOT a super-being or a magician
-NOT there to fix IT blunders
-NOT the only guardian of the realm
-Unable to STOP all cyber-attacks.
-NOT a scapegoat/sacrificial lamb
-NOT accountable but responsible

We often get the sense that CISOs do play these roles as they come in and out. What can be done to temper these beliefs? "

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_10-06-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/i-want-to-but-i-just-cant-trust-your-single-pane-of-glass/)

I've already got a view into my company's security. It's going to take a lot to get me to to dump it for your solution.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Joshua Scott (@joshuascott94), former CISO, Realtor.com.

HUGE thanks to our sponsor, Kenna Security.

Kenna Security

With Kenna Security, companies efficiently manage the right level of risk for their business. Our Modern Vulnerability Management model eliminates the friction between Security and IT teams about what to patch, providing clear prioritization based on real-time threat intelligence and guidance applied to each customer’s unique environment across infrastructure, applications and IoT.

On this week's episode

First 90 days of a CISO

How do you define the likelihood of impact? Yaron Levi, CISO, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City, shared an article by Brian Spanswick of Splunk who discussed this process of building out a company's security program, and that mission should be "mitigate the likelihood and potential business impact of a breach while supporting an organization's strategic goals and business objectives." Our guest was Realtor.com's first CISO. He built their cybersecurity program from scratch. We talked about how he reduced impact while staying keen to the organization's objectives.

How do you go about discovering new security solutions

In the last three years, where have our guests successfully innovated in cybersecurity? Why did they do it? And where do they think they need the next innovation?

What's Worse?!

How much battle damage do you want your CISO to have?

Can you change Mike's mind

Mike inspired me to ask this question on Twitter, "What would a single pane of glass need to have for you to dump your current pane of glass?" This was has major argument that each single pane of glass requires him to dump his current one. The question is what type of mountain does a security vendor need to climb for him to unload his current view of his security program.

What Is It and Why Do I Care?

Today's topic is threat detection and I'm a little loose on this as I got slight variations on threat detection from insider threats, to SIEM, to just threat detection. I'm lumping them all into the umbrella of threat detection, but it'll be obvious which is which. Vendors send various pitches explaining their category and also explaining what differentiates them. Mike and our guest will determine which is the best and from that and I will announce the winners, but only the winners.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_09-29-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/security-is-suffering-from-devops-fomo/)

Darn it. DevOps is having this awesome successful party and we want in! We've tried inserting ourselves in the middle (DevSecOps) and we launched a pre-party (shift left), but they still don't like us.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest this week is Dayo Adetoye (@dayoadetoye), senior manager - security architecture and engineering, Mimecast.

Thanks to our sponsor, Capsule8.

Capsule8

Capsule8 is defining modern enterprise protection by providing detection and response for Linux infrastructure in any environment. Capsule8 provides host-based detection and investigatory data for incident response with on-going support. Unlike anyone else, Capsule8 mitigates the financial, scalability and reliability limitations of protecting your Linux infrastructure.

On this week’s episode

Are we making the situation better or worse?

What makes a successful phish? On Sophos' blog Paul Ducklin writes about their most successful phishing emails. Ducklin noted that most of the successful phishes dealt with mundane and undramatic issues that still had a sense of importance. Looking at these examples they do seem to follow a similar pattern of something looking official that is being requested from the company and could you click here to check it out. Is that the majority of what you're testing? If so, what exactly is the value in conducting phishing tests on employees? Can the testing have a negative effect in security or even morale?

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

What is the right approach to threat modeling? In a blog post, Chris Romeo of Security Journey opines that formal training or tools won't work. Security needs to ask questions of developers about features and then show them how a threat evolves, thus allowing them to ultimately do it themselves.

Adam Shostack of Shostack and Associates advocates for formal training. He says Romeo's informal approach to threat modeling sounds attractive, but doesn't work because you're trying to scale threat modeling across developers and if you tell one developer the information it's going to be passed down like a game of telephone where each successive person tells a distorted version of what the last person said.

So what's the right approach to building threat models across a DevOps environment?

What's Worse?!

What's the worst place to find your company assets?

Close your eyes and visualize the perfect engagement

Shifting Left. DevSecOps, These are the mechanisms that have been used to infuse security into the DevOps supply chain. While noble, both concepts break the philosophy and structure of DevOps which is based on automation, speed, and delivery. But, DevOps is also about delivering quality. So rather than inserting themselves, how does security participate in a way that DevOps already loves?

If you haven’t made this mistake, you’re not in security

On AskNetSec on reddit, Triffid-oil asked, "What was something that you spent effort learning and later realized that it was never going to be useful?" And let me add to that, it's something either someone told you or you believed for some reason it was critical for your cybersecurity education and you later realized it wasn't valuable at all.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_09-22-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/enjoying-my-blissful-ignorance-of-cyber-vulnerabilities/)

What keeps me up at night? Nothing! That's because I hold onto cybersecurity myths because it makes me believe I don't have a security problem.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Dustin Wilcox, CISO, Anthem.

Thanks to our sponsor, Capsule8

Capsule8

Capsule8 is defining modern enterprise protection by providing detection and response for Linux infrastructure in any environment. Capsule8 provides host-based detection and investigatory data for incident response with on-going support. Unlike anyone else, Capsule8 mitigates the financial, scalability and reliability limitations of protecting your Linux infrastructure.

On this week’s episode

Why is everybody talking about this now

Kris Rides of Tiro Security asks, "When writing a job description in cybersecurity, what's your process?" What in the job description is most important that you want potential candidates to know? And do you have any universal requirements of all candidates?

Is this a cyber security disinformation campaign?

Stuart Mitchell of Stott and May posted an article from FoxNews on cybersecurity myths, such as I don't have anything worth protecting, I will know when something bad happens. From this list, or possibly another myth, which one do you think is the most damaging?

What's Worse?!

Public or government interference?

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

Why are InfoSec professionals still struggling to secure their cloud environments? According to a study by Dimension Research, sponsored by Tripwire, 76 percent admit to having trouble. And only 21 percent they're assessing their overall cloud security posture in real time or near real time. What are the quarter of security professionals doing who are not struggling with securing the cloud?

Close your eyes and visualize the perfect engagement

Do we need more cybersecurity professionals, or do we just need our general workforce to be more cybersecurity minded? Phil Venables, Board Director - Goldman Sachs Bank, makes a good argument for the latter. Mike has mentioned that when he can make cybersecurity personal, like offering employees a password manager, they start to see the value. Assuming making security personal is the best tactic, what is the ripple effect of that? How do they approach security at your business and how do the efforts of the security team change?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_09-15-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/tell-me-were-secure-so-i-can-go-back-to-ignoring-security/)

I don't know anything about our state of security. I don't want to know either. But I do want to know you know about security and there's nothing I have to worry about. You can do that, right?

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Dan Walsh, CISO, Rally Health.

Thanks to our sponsor, Capsule8.

https://capsule8.com/

Capsule8 is defining modern enterprise protection by providing detection and response for Linux infrastructure in any environment. Capsule8 provides host-based detection and investigatory data for incident response with on-going support. Unlike anyone else, Capsule8 mitigates the financial, scalability and reliability limitations of protecting your Linux infrastructure.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now

How do you respond to "Are we secure?" It's a loaded question that we've addressed previously. Daniel Hooper, CISO, Varo Money brought up this topic again that caused a flurry of discussion on LinkedIn. In the past Mike has mentioned that he talks about the state of his security program and where it's heading. The core of this question is anxiety about something a non-security person doesn't understand. How does a security leader break down this question into small parts, and what question should a CEO be asking if not "Are we secure?"

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

The engineering team at Rally Health is around 800 and our guest Dan has a security team of 30+ of which only 5 of them are application security people. Those five are definitely going to need some help if they're going to have an impact on how secure the applications are. I ask Dan Walsh what he's doing with the engineers that's turning them into application security force multipliers.

What's Worse?!

How damaging is a bad reputation?

What do you think of this vendor marketing tactic?

CISOs have ways to retalilate against aggressive sales tactics. George Finney, CISO at Southern Methodist University told a story on LinkedIn about an unsolicited sales invite that was sent to 65 people at his school. He blocked the email. He asked the community if that was too harsh. Similarly Steve Zalewski, deputy CISO of Levi's said if he sees aggressive tactics by a company, the security team has the ability to block the whole domain from their servers. Are these tactics too harsh? Have Mike and our guest taken similar tactics, and/or is there something else they do in response to extremely aggressive sales tactics?

If you haven’t made this mistake, you’re not in security

How prepared do you need to handle your next cyber job? A question was asked on reddit from someone who wasn't sure they should take a job because they didn't have all the skills to do the job. Most people just said, "Do it." How would Mike and our guest answer this question as an employee and a manager. What level of unpreparedness for a job is acceptable and possibly even exciting? Could too much result in imposter syndrome?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_09-08-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/request-a-demo-of-our-inability-to-post-a-demo/)

It's really easy to include "Request a Demo" button on our site. But potential buyers would actually like to just watch a demo on our site. Should we actually expend just a little more effort to record a demo and upload it to our site?

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Ross Young, CISO, Caterpillar Financial Services Corporation.

Thanks to our sponsor, Kenna Security.

Kenna Security

With Kenna Security, companies efficiently manage the right level of risk for their business. Our Modern Vulnerability Management model eliminates the friction between Security and IT teams about what to patch, providing clear prioritization based on real-time threat intelligence and guidance applied to each customer’s unique environment across infrastructure, applications and IoT.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now?

Our guest posted about the 10+ daily product pitches he receives and he suggested that vendors place a product demo on their site. It just so happens, I also posted about this on LinkedIn. I am astonished that not every vendor spends their first marketing dollars on creating a product demo and posting that video. If a security practitioner is interested in a company, how do they begin their research? What do they look for? Do they watch product demo videos? Do they click the "request a demo" button?

First 90 Days of a CISO

Our guest shared a study from PWC that points out what management thinks are the most important roles for a CISO. Eighty four percent considered the ability to educate and collaborate across the business was critical making it the top most skill they look for in a CISO. At the same time, it appears investing in a talent management program for leadership was the least important with only 22 percent responding. What I read from this is management wants you to lead, and get the whole company on board, but do it alone. Plus, they expect you to be a perfect cybersecurity leader out of the box. Is that feasible? Is this why we're having so much burnout of CISOs? It's not just the pressure of protecting, but taking on all leadership responsibilities with no ongoing support?

What's Worse?!

How are you advertising for new hires?

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

Turns out half of employees are cutting corners on security when working from home. This includes using home computers for corporate work, emailing sensitive documents from personal accounts. It's not malicious, but the distractions of work from home life and demands to deliver quickly are forcing employees to take the less secure route. Also, being away from the watchful IT and security gives them the breathing room to be less careful. Tip of the hat to Gina Yacone of Agio for posting this article from ZDnet about Tessian's work from home study. How can security leaders stay in contact with employees so they don't stray?

How CISOs are digesting the latest security news

What makes a security podcast valuable? What elements does a cybersecurity podcast need to have for you to say to yourself, "I'm glad I spent the time listening to that"?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_09-01-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/the-do-what-we-tell-you-technique-isnt-working/)

We've yelled, we've screamed, we've complained, and we've whined. Those darn users simply don't do what they tell them to do. I guess we're going to have to give empathy a try.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Michelle Valdez (@scauzim), CISO, OneMain Financial.

Thanks to this week’s podcast sponsor, PlexTrac.

PlexTrac

PlexTrac is a revolutionary, yet simple, cybersecurity platform that centralizes all security assessments, penetration test reports, audit findings, and vulnerabilities into a single location. PlexTrac vastly improves the risk management lifecycle, allowing security professionals to generate better reports faster, aggregate and visualize important analytics, and collaborate on remediation in real-time.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now

Why hasn't COVID spurned more disaster recovery and business continuity planning roles? This is what Stuart Mitchell, a recruiter at Stott and May, noticed. Obviously, he's not getting that much demand. The community says it's assumed already into many roles. I have to think BCP and DR are everyone's responsibility. If that's the case, has BCP and DR planning increased during this time? Why or why not?

How to become CISO

Are two CISOs better than one? Our guest mentioned that her company has split the CISO role. One, the head of tech, reports to the CTO and the other, our guest's role, CISO and head of cyber risk reports to the chief risk officer. How exactly does this work? And what does our guest believe are the pros and cons of splitting the CISO role this way?

What's Worse?!

This time, no matter what the answer, everyone's going to get in trouble.

And now for a little security philosophy

Chad Loder, Habitu8, said, "Us InfoSec experts spend too much time asking 'How do we get users to care more about security?' and not enough time asking 'How do we get security to care more about users?'" So I asked my host and guest that question, and more importantly, how has that learning about users improved their security team and overall security?

First 90 days of a CISO

William Birchett, CIO of Required Team Gear, asked, "When you start, how much do you know of what security posture you've inherited?" We've talked about this before, but I want you to answer in reflection. What were the biggest surprises (positive or negative) between what you knew starting out and what you discovered after 90 days on the job?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_08-25-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/set-it-forget-it-reset-it-repeat/)

As long as you reset it and repeat, everything in cybersecurity is "set it and forget it".

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Brett Conlon (@DecideSecurity), CISO, Edelman Financial Engines.

Check out Tricia Howard's dramatic readings of cold emails.

Keyavi Data

Our Keyavi breaks new ground by making data itself intelligent and self-aware, so that it stays under its owner’s control and protects itself immediately, no matter where it is or who is attempting access. Keyavi is led by a team of renowned data security, encryption, and cyber forensics experts. See for yourself at keyavidata.com.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now

On LinkedIn and on Twitter, I asked "Is there anything in cybersecurity that's 'set it and forget it'?" There were plenty of funny answers like "Passwords" and the "Off" switch. But there were some interesting answers like whitelists from Brian Haugli of Sidechannel security and ethics from Stephen Gill of Russel Holdings. So many treat security as "set it and forget it" but we know that's a path to insecurity. Regardless, is there ANYTHING in security we can set and forget?

Question for the board

Our guest claims he's got an awesome board. I don't think we've ever heard that on our show. In most cases there's either fear of the board or the CISO doesn't even get direct conversation with the board. I asked our guest what is it about his board that's so awesome and what tips could he give to CISOs to move their board into that territory?

What's Worse?!

Who is going to handle physical assets the worst?

If you haven’t made this mistake, you’re not in security

Alexander Rabke, Splunk, asked, "How should sales people handle situations when, in fact, you are a security company with a security vulnerability (he also talked about a product not working) - what do you tell customers. How do you like to see this handled by the vendor?" I know a first response is to be honest, but they want to hold onto your business. What's a way salespeople could go about doing that?

What do you think of this pitch?

We're not talking vendor pitches in this segment. We're talking candidate pitches. Gary Hayslip, CISO, Softbank Investment Advisers and former guest on this show has an article on Peerlyst, a platform which is unfortunately going away, about finding your first job in security. Hayslip's first tip asks, "What information do you have?" Researching yourself is good advice, but I want to extend that to a question that I think puts you ahead of the pack and ask, "What's your unfair advantage?" It's a question that I heard investor Chris Sacca ask startups and I think it can also apply to individuals applying for jobs. Agree? If so, what are some good unfair advantages from candidates that have put them over the top?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_08-18-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/i-need-resources-to-free-up-my-resources)

Automation sounds wonderful and I'd love to have some free time, but geez, who do I need to hire to make that happen?

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest this week is Aaron Ansari (@theanswar), VP, Cloud One, Trend Micro.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor Trend Micro.

Trend Micro

Trend Micro Incorporated, a global leader in cybersecurity solutions, helps to make the world safe for exchanging digital information. Our innovative solutions for consumers, businesses, and governments provide layered security for data centers, cloud environments, networks, and endpoints. For more information, visit www.trendmicro.com.

On this week's episode

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

How well has the cybersecurity automation gambit played itself out? Last year, Ericka Chickowski wrote a piece on Dark Reading about the cybersecurity automation paradox. She said that "security teams find that a lack of automation expertise keeps them from getting the most out of cybersecurity automation." According to a Ponemon study, that accounts for 56% of organizations. That's the number one obstacle. It's more than legacy IT challenges, lack of budget, and interoperability issues. 40% of respondents say they'll need to hire more people to support security automation. Everyone speaks of wanting automation, but is it more of an aspiration and a marketing pitch? Has it specifically alleviated any pain over the past year. And if so, what?

What annoys a CISO?

For my co-host MIke Johnson, the annoyance is the "single panes of glass" that so many security vendors offer. Our guest, Aaron Ansari is ready to challenge Mike on his grand distaste for "the single pane of glass" as the window to your security status/infrastructure/whatever you like it to be.

"What's Worse?!"

What's worse, failure but honesty, or success and deception?

Please, Enough. No, More.

Topic is "cloud configuration." What have we heard enough about with cloud configuration, and what would we like to hear a lot more?

Ummm. Maybe you shouldn’t have done that

We're talking about vendor lock-in. It makes recurring sales for vendors super easy. But it makes exit strategies very difficult. On Quora, the question was asked, "How do huge companies like Netflix avoid vendor lock-in with a cloud computing provider?" So I ask the question to both of you, what safeguards can you setup to prevent vendor lock-in or at least make an exit from a cloud provider as painless as possible?

Creative Commons photo attribution to Alden Jewell (CC BY 2.0)

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_08-11-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/were-not-fooled-by-your-diversity-theater/)

We're casting for our diversity theater program on the latest episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Matt Conner, CISO, National Geospatial Intelligence Agency.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, PlexTrac

PlexTrac

PlexTrac is a revolutionary, yet simple, cybersecurity platform that centralizes all security assessments, penetration test reports, audit findings, and vulnerabilities into a single location. PlexTrac vastly improves the risk management lifecycle, allowing security professionals to generate better reports faster, aggregate and visualize important analytics, and collaborate on remediation in real-time.

How CISOs are digesting the latest security news

If you thought tech firms were abysmal with diversity hiring, it appears venture capital firms are even worse. In a Washington Post article by Nitasha Tiku, just 1 percent of VC dollars went to black start-up founders in 2018, and that same year and percentage reflects the number of black decision-makers at VC firms as well. With the scrutiny turned up, small minority-focused funds have spurned, and there has been some cosmetic title inflation of minority employees at VC firms, but black tech entrepreneurs are brushing it off as diversity theater. What opportunities and money are VC firms leaving on the table by not taking diversity seriously? What should VC firms do to prove that their efforts are not diversity theater?

We don’t have much time. What’s your decision?

Interesting question on reddit by throwawaycostam who asks, "How do you create easy to memorize, yet relatively strong passwords?" A password manager is first and foremost recommended, but there are cases where you do have to remember a few passwords, like the one to get into your password manager and desktop screen lock. If you have to memorize five really good complex passwords, what technique do you recommend to create those passwords?

What's Worse?!

Is clueless better than not being engaged?

It’s time for “Ask a CISO”

On a previous episode, CISO, Dennis Leber, now with University of Tennessee Health Science Center, but previously with a state government agency said there's no perfect pitch a vendor could make to him that would facilitate a sale. Heck, he couldn't even write the perfect pitch to himself that would work. We know the government is a different beast when it comes to procurement. What are the stumbling blocks vendors need to concern themselves when pitching a government agency?

We’ve got listeners and they’ve got questions

Jesse Rosenbaum of Varonis brought a job posting to my attention that showed requests for extremely specific experiences with different applications. Jesse asks, does the listing the name of products or protocols you're using expose the company to additional security risks? Isn't this the reason so many customers of security vendors are not willing to give testimonials? But if they're putting these products and protocols in job descriptions, isn't this the same darn thing?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_08-04-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/how-to-tell-if-your-ciso-sucks-at-their-job/)

If your CISO wants to be a 'visionary' but they can't seem to pull off basic security functions, they probably suck at their job.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Lee Parrish (@leeparrish), CISO, Hertz.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Keyavi Data.

Keyavi Data

Our Keyavi breaks new ground by making data itself intelligent and self-aware, so that it stays under its owner’s control and protects itself immediately, no matter where it is or who is attempting access. Keyavi is led by a team of renowned data security, encryption, and cyber forensics experts. See for yourself at keyavidata.com.

On this week's episode

Is this the best use of our Money

On CSO Online, Terena Bell has a piece on how to cut your budget without hurting security. The suggestions are well known: Identify overlaps in technology, renogiate contracts, and use tech to lower the need for manhours. Her last tip was a warning about layoffs. Are you always looking to reduce costs or is it something you do when it's mandated? And how are you supported by the business if and when you proactively reduce costs? Or does that not ever happen because the demand is ever growing.

Is this where I should put my marketing dollars?

I'm not sure, but it's possible that our guest is our first CISO that has an MBA. In his role as CISO he's mentioned he uses common marketing techniques to advance your organization's cybersecurity program. He said, "Security is just an inside sales job and that marketing creates the demand that sales fulfills." Lee tells us about what he learned in his MBA training that was so critical for your growth as a CISO.

What's Worse?!

We have a split decision on third party risk management.

How a security vendor helped me this week

We haven't done this segment in a long time and we got a request from a listener to bring it back. So I ask Mike and our guest, recently, how has a security vendor helped you. And were any of those security vendors who helped not customers?

We’ve got listeners and they’ve got questions

A listener, who wishes to remain anonymous asks this question: "How do you convince a CISO to focus on the basics?"

The listener goes on and says, "I'm not a CISO but have seen and talked to many that want to be seen as 'visionaries' so they focus on 'new hotness' things like 'zero trust' instead of the basics things that are missing like patching, asset management, etc." The listener understand this, and he's obviously talking about his own CISO, hence the anonymity, but how do you approach your CISO and get him or her to balance their own time with basics or as Yaron Levi, CISO of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City says, "fundamentals" while also having a forward looking vision of security?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_07-28-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/how-will-the-candidate-respond-to-whats-worse/)

A potential candidate's response to a "What's Worse?!" question will show how they can handle risk decisions.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest this week is Elliot Lewis (@elliotdlewis), CEO, Keyavi Data.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Keyavi Data (formerly Encryptics)

Keyavi Data

Now you can share data without ever losing control of it. Our advanced architecture makes data self-protecting, intelligent and self-aware – wherever it goes, no matter who has it. Our .SAFE patented multi-key technology enables data to evaluate its own safety conditions, including geo-sensing, recipient authentication, and policy changes from its owner. Contact Keyavi Data today and see for yourself.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now

If we could change one thing about the cybersecurity industry, what would it be? Rilhouse on reddit brought this post by Naomi Buckwalter of Energage to my attention. What you can change are processes and behavior currently in the industry.

Is this the best solution?

Both Mike and Elliot hire cybersecurity talent. Here's a question from bubblehack3r on reddit who asked during our AMA. "What are your different methods and tools you use to verify and test the professionally of a new hire in the cyber security domain?"

"What's Worse?!"

The shortest ever "What's Worse?!" question.

Please, Enough. No, More.

Encryption. We've had it around for decades, but people and companies still don't use it. What have you heard enough about regarding encryption and what would you like to hear a lot more?

It’s time for “Ask a CISO”

What have Mike and Elliot learned from a product deployment that they didn't realize until after they deployed it.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_07-21-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/i-love-cold-calls-said-the-ciso-on-opposite-day/)

While CISOs are not excited to receive your unexpected phone call, they are excited to listen to this week's episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Helen Patton, CISO, The Ohio State University.

GitGuardian

GitGuardian empowers organizations to secure their secrets - such as API keys and other credentials - from being exposed in compromised places or leaked publicly. GitGuardian offers a threat intelligence solution focused on detecting secrets leaked on public GitHub and an automated secrets detection solution which tightly integrates with your DevOps pipeline.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now

Are we making ourselves safer by calling end users "dumb"? On LinkedIn, Shaun Marion, CISO, Republic Services called out those security professionals who chose to put down the end user. As a result, security professionals in aggregate are getting a bad wrap.

What do you do to change this long held belief of security professionals as putting down the end user?

Rich Mason of Critical Infrastructure said, "offer something beyond training to mitigate the damage potential of that click. You can bash those who don't heed your advice on running with scissors or you can design better processes and safer scissors."

How do you go about building systems and behavior of the security team with the end user in mind?

Are we having communication issues?

There is ENDLESS debate on cold calling. I know most CISOs despise it, but as evidenced by Ross Gustavson of Reciprocity, he met 120% of his sales quota solely on cold calling. He posted all his stats so you simply can't argue with that success rate. And Jay Jensen of Sales Evolution said the conversation of cold calling should be about how to do it effectively, and not whether it should be eradicated. And Allan Alford said he wants the conversation to be about partnering with sales staff.

What is the communication you're open to having with a security vendor to which you don't currently have a relationship?

What's Worse?!

Those miserable team building exercises. Is there a worse way to do them?

If you haven’t made this mistake, you’re not in security

Eli Migdal of Boardish ran a poll on LinkedIn asking how many cyber professionals suffer from impostor syndrome. Sixty two percent believed most did, and Allan Alford, who admitted having it himself, said he was on a call with 25 other security professionals and all of them admitted to suffering at one time from impostor syndrome. Why does this come about and is it healthy or detrimental?

RESOURCE: Do You Suffer From Impostor Syndrome? You Are Not Alone

Is this where I should put my marketing dollars?

On LinkedIn, I published an article entitled, "Formula for Creating a Successful Security Podcast." In it I just talked about my experience publishing successful and not successful shows. I'm a proponent of security vendors using their marketing dollars to produce podcasts because it's a means to create a one-to-many and many-to-many relationship with the audience.

Focusing on other security and technology podcasts, what makes us excited to listen to a show and actually engage with the show or other listeners. And have we for any reason stopped listening to a show and why?

NOTE: CISO Series and its parent company Spark Media Solutions is now offering consulting and production services for others, including vendors, who want to launch and maintain their own successful podcast. Please contact me, David Spark, for more information.

 

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_07-14-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/nytimes-critic-called-our-security-theater-unconvincing/)

We tried to pull off the Hamilton of security theater and we fell short.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Shawn Bowen (@smbowen), CISO, Restaurant Brands International which handles restaurants such as Burger King, Popeye's, Tim Hortons, and Louisiana Kitchen.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor GitGuardian.

GitGuardianGitGuardian empowers organizations to secure their secrets - such as API keys and other credentials - from being exposed in compromised places or leaked publicly. GitGuardian offers a threat intelligence solution focused on detecting secrets leaked on public GitHub and an automated secrets detection solution which tightly integrates with your DevOps pipeline.

On this week's episode

How CISOs are digesting the latest security news

We recorded this episode on June 24th, just a five days after Trump's first rally in Oklahoma where purportedly TikTok fans en masse were able to register for Trump's rally and fool his entire staff into believing that 1 million people had registered and were planning to attend his rally. In the end, the arena was less than half full. We are all well aware that some cyber protests can cause serious damage, but does this one? Is this the kind of peaceful cyber protests that we should encourage or not encourage? Dan Lohrmann at Security Mentor posted this discussion and said no matter what political affiliation you're on this is a call for more cybersecurity because this will happen again. But is this the fault of Trump's cyber team or his social media team for not keeping an eye on TikTok?

Why is everybody talking about this now?

On AskNetSec on reddit, NoInterestingGuy, a college student starting his first internship at a security firm, posted he likes to participate in "extracurricular activities". He then asked, "If I were to get caught with a crime related to cyber security, would that impact my chances significantly of getting hired in the future for a security company?" The community almost resoundingly said, "Stop," but has Mike and our guest ever hired someone with a cybercrime past or caught an employee engaging in cybercrime? How did they handled it. Is there an "it depends" meter? We all do stupid stuff in college.

What's Worse?!

Is the unknowing always the worst?

It's security awareness training time

On CSO Online, J.M. Porup wrote a piece about five examples of security theater and how to spot them. Security theater refers to the practice having a show of implementing security where its effectiveness is in question. Some examples are purposefully complex passwords, checkbox compliance, and bad security awareness training.

How do we spot security theater? Is there any value to security theater? What's the antidote? If it's in place, how do we eradicate it?

What Is It and Why Do I Care?

We played this game before and like the "What's Worse?!" game, the title pretty much explains it. I have three pitches from three different vendors who are all in the same category, Security Awareness Training. I have asked the reps to first, in 25 words or less, just explain their category. That’s the “What Is It?” and then for the “Why Do I Care?” I asked them to explain what differentiates their product or makes them unique also in 25 words or less. It is up to Mike and Shawn pick their favorite of each and explain why. I only reveal the winning contestants and their companies.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_07-07-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/why-am-i-working-harder-during-this-pandemic/)

Is it the increased work or the pandemic itself that's causing us all to work more than we've ever worked before?

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Christopher Zell, vp, head of information security, The Wendy’s Company.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor GitGuardian.

GitGuardian

GitGuardian empowers organizations to secure their secrets - such as API keys and other credentials - from being exposed in compromised places or leaked publicly. GitGuardian offers a threat intelligence solution focused on detecting secrets leaked on public GitHub and an automated secrets detection solution which tightly integrates with your DevOps pipeline.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now?

On TechRepublic, Scott Matteson wrote an article about cybersecurity pros working harder than ever during the pandemic. Stuart Mitchell of Stott and May posted the article to LinkedIn and asked if anyone has taken a day off since COVID-19 started, and the general consensus is no. I see a multitude of factors affecting this: increased surface area to protect, compliance is more difficult, I also have to deal with my family, and where the heck is anyone going to go for vacation? I guess I'll just work.

Close your eyes and visualize the perfect engagement

On LinkedIn, our guest Chris Zell asked others to be more welcoming when you see someone post "aspiring cybersecurity professional." We discussed the approach and what the community could teach us.

What's Worse?!

Three options of how to talk to the board.

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

On CSO Online, Mary Pratt has a guide for CISOs on securely laying people off. What are critical technical considerations during layoff time, and as a manager how do you manage security for those people who are still there. Have either of you made a massive security mistake during a layoff that was a great learning experience for you?

What Is It and Why Do I Care?

We played this game before and like the "What's Worse?!" game, the title pretty much explains it. I have three pitches from three different vendors who are all in the same category of governance, risk and compliance or GRC. I have asked the reps to first, in 25 words or less, just explain their category. That’s the “What Is It?” and then for the “Why Do I Care?” I asked them to explain what differentiates their product or makes them unique also in 25 words or less. It is up to Mike and Chris to pick their favorite of each and explain why. I only reveal the winning contestants and their companies. Ready to play?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_06-30-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/i-have-the-perfect-job-for-you-but-probably-not/)

You put those qualifications on your resume, and I queried. So don't blame me for getting your hopes up.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week Brandon Greenwood, vp, security, Overstock.com.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor Trend Micro.

Trend Micro

Trend Micro Incorporated, a global leader in cybersecurity solutions, helps to make the world safe for exchanging digital information. Our innovative solutions for consumers, businesses, and governments provide layered security for data centers, cloud environments, networks, and endpoints. For more information, visit www.trendmicro.com.

On this week's episode

How CISOs are digesting the latest security news

Paul Martini of iboss asks, "What network weaknesses has the current pandemic revealed?"

Close your eyes and visualize the perfect engagement

As evidenced by a previous episode, security recruiters have a hard time getting some respect. Let's discuss this issue from the viewpoint of the candidate. On Peerlyst, David Froud of Concept Security felt that the recruiter approach of saying I have a perfect job for you was misguided. Mike and our guest talk about their early security careers and how welcome they were to approaches from security recruiters.

What's Worse?!

Crappy tools or crappy team? What's worse?

I tell ya, CISOs get no respect

On CSO Online, Neal Weinberg has a story about hard truths security professionals have to deal with. One item was the outright lack of respect, being misunderstood and underappreciated, from the board and your coworkers. I know the generic response is communications and listen, but I want to know what are ways to command leadership so those do pay attention to you and you do get that respect. We discuss specific turning points in security leadership careers that allowed Mike and our guest to do this.

Vendors have questions. Our CISOs have answers

Dennis Underwood of Cyber Crucible asks if you can you be a threat hunter if you have to sign NDAs. Are NDAs the cover up so companies don't have to reveal information about their failed defenses? And are NDAs a common occurrence in bug bounties?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_06-23-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/we-compensate-our-low-paying-ciso-jobs-with-high-stress/)

On this week's episode we're seeking candidates for unrealistically low-paying CISO positions.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Nir Rothenberg, CISO, Rapyd.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor Trend Micro.

Trend Micro

Trend Micro Incorporated, a global leader in cybersecurity solutions, helps to make the world safe for exchanging digital information. Our innovative solutions for consumers, businesses, and governments provide layered security for data centers, cloud environments, networks, and endpoints. For more information, visit www.trendmicro.com.

On this week's episode

Why is everyone talking about this now?

On LinkedIn, Farhan Khan, a recruiter at CyberApt Recruitment, told a tale of getting a call asking if he could help his company recruit a seasoned CISO for their 300+ person company. He was excited until he found out the salary they were offering the CISO was in the range of $90-$105K.

We've talked before about unrealistic CISO salaries before, but this is actually below the rate of entry level cyber positions in the Bay Area. How do CISOs or heck any cybersecurity professional handle someone's unrealistic expectations? Do you say something or just say, "No thank you"?

Also, Davi Ottenheimer of Inrupt, brought this story to my attention and argued that high CISO salaries are just attracting fraudsters. Does our panel agree, and if so, what would a company have to be wary of?

Mike's Confused. Let’s help him out

On previous shows Mike has admitted he would not want to (not confused although that may be part of it) run the IT department. Nir mentioned that he feels that getting out of one's comfort zone is critical, no matter what department you're in. What are the pros and cons of other departments not just being security aware, but taking on cybersecurity responsibilities? And vice versa, cybersecurity taking on other department responsibilities? How far can/should it go?

What's Worse?!

Too much flexibility or too many restrictions?

We’ve got listeners and they’ve got questions

Anya Shpilman of Swiss Gulf Partners sent recorded this question: "I'm a recruiter and I specialize in cybersecurity recruitment. At the end of the show everyone says they're hiring. But I have a hard time getting traction from CISOs. So what would you like to see/hear in those initial emails or LinkedIn messages."

Go here to record a question to be played on one of our shows.

Umm, Is this good idea?

I recently published an article on CISO Series entitled "25 API Security Tips You're Probably Not Considering”. The very first tip, from Gary Hayslip, CISO, Softbank Investment Advisers, is K.I.S.S. or Keep It Simple Stupid. I then went on to provide 24 more tips from experts which if you were to deploy them all would in no way be simple. KISS sounds great in theory, but how the heck do you pull it off in practice. Can you point to an example of how you took something that was complicated and simplified it?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_06-16-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/keep-pouring-ill-tell-you-when-ive-had-enough-security/)

When do we hit the diminishing returns of too much cybersecurity? How will we know? Will a bell go off? Will our cup runneth over?

This week's episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest is Tony Sager, svp, chief evangelist, Center for Internet Security.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, AppOmni.

AppOmni

AppOmni is the leading provider of SaaS security and management platform for the enterprise. AppOmni provides unprecedented data access visibility, management and security of SaaS, enabling organizations to secure mission-critical and sensitive data. With AppOmni, organizations can automatically and continuously enforce rules for data access, data sharing and third-party applications.

On this week's episode

Looking down the security roadmap

Dean Webb of ForeScout asked this great question on Peerlyst. "What are the things that are the hardest to fix that leave organizations the most vulnerable?" These are not the quick security fixes or low hanging fruit, but rather the big projects that nobody wants that often never get finished. What are they and is there any way to make them not so painful?

It’s time for “Ask a CISO”

sitdownson on reddit's AskNetSec asked, "How and when did you decide to specialize?" Sultan_of_Ping answered, "For most people it's not a decision, the specialization comes to them." Do you get a taste of everything and then determine which one you're passionate about? Do you read market demands (e.g. cloud security) and go in that route? What have you seen your colleagues do?

What's Worse?!

A "What's Worse?!" first - FOUR scenarios. Which one is worst?

Here's some surprising research

We're revisiting the Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report. Tony's organization, Center for Internet Security had a hand in the report and specifically at the end where you map the CIS top 20 to the breach findings. In particular, the report notes that there are 171 safeguards that are grouped based on the resources and risks the organizations are facing. Has anything shifted significantly in this most recent report?

What’s the return on investment?

Tip of the hat to Norman Hunt, Deputy CISO, GEICO, who sent this article from HelpNet Security about a study on CEOs and CISOs approaches to "When is security enough security?" There seems to be a disparity with CEOs being more confident with the security that CISOs. I have to assume that mature understanding of risk is the biggest contributor, and the nature of the job of a CISO who sees more threats than the CEO, but only in a cyber context. A CEO sees all the other risks. What causes such swings in opinions?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_06-09-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/facebook-personality-quiz-asks-whats-your-favorite-password/)

What's your favorite combination of letters, numbers, and symbols you like to use to log onto your favorite app or financial institution? Let us know and we'll see if it matches any of your friends!

This week's episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Lakshmi Hanspal (@lakshmihanspal), CISO, Box.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, CyberArk.

CyberArk

At CyberArk, we believe that sharing insights and guidance across the CISO community will help strengthen security strategies and lead to better-protected organizations. CyberArk is committed to the continued exploration of topics that matter most to CISOs related to improving and integrating privileged access controls.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now?

On AskNetSec on reddit, user u/L7nx asks, "How do you handle alert fatigue?" Many vendors out there listening want to scream, "We've got a single pane of glass solution!"

On reddit, Kamwind commented that it's not so much managing the output, but rather the input and false positives. "What are you doing to tune those rules and IOCs (indicators of compromise) to reflect your network vs accepting them from whatever vendor you're getting them from."

Is alert fatigue a real thing and what can be done to manage input and output?

It's security awareness training time

There's a meme resurfacing that pokes fun at Facebook personality quizzes that ask seemingly innocuous questions such as "What's Your Favorite Band?" and "What's Your Favorite Teacher's Name?" In the meme, the answers to each question are just one word of the sentence, "Stop giving people your personal info to guess your passwords and security questions."
We've talked about training programs that rely on fear. Humor seems rather effective here, but heck, I don't know. Does humor in security training work? Does fear? What tone have you seen actually foster behavioral change?

What's Worse?!

Do you likeable or useful vendors? Sometimes they're not both.

Here's some surprising research

The Verizon DBIR is out. Mike's favorite. There's a ton to unpack as there always is, but for this segment I just want to visit one item in this report and that's configuration errors. From a quote by Larry Dignan on ZDNet: "Errors definitely win the award for best supporting action this year. They are now equally as common as social breaches and more common than malware... hacking remains higher, and that is due to credential theft and use." I get the sense that second to black hat hackers, we're our own worst enemy. One argument for the increase in cloud breaches is because security researchers and others are discovering exposed storage in the cloud. Could it be just poor training of cloud security? Or poorly maintained cloud providers?

Vendors have questions. Our CISOs have answers

Landon Winkelvoss of Nisos asks, "What do your good vendors do on an ongoing basis (quarterly, monthly, weekly, etc) that make renewals easier around budget season? How often should they do it? What metrics and impacts to the business should they document and present that make this relatable to people outside of security such as the CFO?"

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_-_06-02-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/great-security-program-too-bad-we-cant-implement-it/)

Security theory only goes so far. If you want your security program to work, everyone has to do their part.

This week’s episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast features me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series, and co-host Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest is Scott McCormick, CISO, Reciprocity.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Reciprocity.

Reciprocity

ZenGRC by Reciprocity is a cloud-based GRC software that automates and simplifies compliance and risk management, solving critical problems at scale while customizing to your business needs. Adhering to the majority of regulations is a snap with pre-built templates and a unified system of record. Learn more at reciprocitylabs.com.

On this week's episode

How CISOs are digesting the latest security news

The Wall Street Journal has a story about cybersecurity budgets during the COVID-19 crisis. Many companies are dealing with budget cuts across the board. One issue mentioned was that the first items to go from the cybersecurity budget would probably be big projects that require a lot of integration. So as to avoid getting left on the cutting room floor, what would be your advice to vendors on how better to situate themselves, prepare, and prove to potential buyers that they can help with the ease of that integration? Also, for those security leaders, how do they best show compassion to the rest of the business and don't just fight for their slice of the budget pie?

It’s time for “Ask a CISO”

On reddit, countvonruckus states and then asks, "It's great to see CISOs giving back through mentorship. As a younger professional looking to become a CISO someday, it can be difficult to get a minute of a senior leader's time even for critical work decisions. How should someone looking to find a mentor or to benefit from the mentorship of a particular leader go about asking in a respectful but effective way? Is there anything a mentee can do to provide value in exchange that will make it more worthwhile for mentors?"

It's time to play, "What's Worse?!"

Two "What's Worse?!" scenarios nobody likes but many have faced especially now.

Please, Enough. No, More.

Operationalizing GRC. What have you heard enough about operationalizing GRC, and what would you like to hear a lot more?

Looking down the security roadmap

On Quora, the question was asked, "Do cloud providers implement governance, risk management and compliance (GRC) well?" I didn't know how one would define "well" and what we should expect from cloud providers to help with GRC efforts. This harkens back to our last segment, because we would hope that cloud providers could actually help us operationalize GRC. What are cloud providers doing to help in GRC efforts?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_05-26-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/we-promoted-the-competition-and-still-won/)

If you're having a problem getting people to discover your space, then maybe you have to do a better job promoting the space even when it involves the competition.

This week’s episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast features me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series, and co-host Mike Johnson. Our guest is Zohar Rozenberg, former head of cyber department in the Israel Defense Force, and current CSO of Elron Electronic Industries.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Reciprocity.

Reciprocity - ZenGRC

ZenGRC by Reciprocity is a cloud-based GRC software that automates and simplifies compliance and risk management, solving critical problems at scale while customizing to your business needs. Adhering to the majority of regulations is a snap with pre-built templates and a unified system of record. Learn more at reciprocitylabs.com.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now?

On this podcast we have sponsored guest episodes in which we dedicate a segment of the show for the sponsor to talk about their category. I was just given the heads up by a listener that a competitor of one of our sponsored guests, actually promoted that episode via an email marketing campaign. I asked the community why they thought that happened. Did the company know they were promoting a direct competitor's solution, or were they of the philosophy of let's promote the space. The more people who know about this problem that benefits the entire industry and in turn that helps our competitor and us. Most people on LinkedIn agreed with the latter and actually thought it was a savvy marketing move possibly demonstrating that the competitor was confident with their product.

It’s time for “Ask a CISO”

Tip of the hat to Sounil Yu, CISO in residence at YL Ventures for bringing up Mike's comment in a Slack channel of your frustration with cybersecurity startups who end up having an "us too" attitude towards creating the next cybersecurity solution. It seemed their only credentials was a successful exit, but not presenting a unique solution to an actual problem. You claimed a criteria that you would only meet with a founder who had a committed idea to a product. But how do you differentiate between an "also ran" and a unique solution?

What's Worse?!

One of our most challenging debates ever

Close your eyes. Breathe in. It’s time for a little security philosophy

On our CISO Series Video Chat, Bob Henderson of Intelligence Services Group asked, "Has measuring risk itself become a risk? Since risk is primarily arbitrary depending on who defines the risk wouldn’t the solutions be arbitrary and thus add complexity and uncertainty. Which are contributors to risk."

Let's dig a little deeper

What are the intrinsic training elements of Israel's elite 8200 that results in so many of the graduates going on to become cybersecurity entrepreneurs? What if anything can other organizations, military units or schools learn from this?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_05-19-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/three-years-experience-required-for-sub-entry-level-positions/)

Our motto for hiring: We never give up on our unreasonable expectations.

This week's episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest is Brandon Traffanstedt, global director of systems engineering, CyberArk.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, CyberArk.

CyberArk

At CyberArk, we believe that sharing insights and guidance across the CISO community will help strengthen security strategies and lead to better-protected organizations. CyberArk is committed to the continued exploration of topics that matter most to CISOs related to improving and integrating privileged access controls.

Are we making the situation better or worse?

On LinkedIn, Gabriel Friedlander of Wizer asked, "Should we be doing home risk assessments?" Could we create bigger problems if we do that? Gabriel's post generated a debate on what actions can significantly reduce risk. Is there value in a home risk assessment and if so, what's it going to reveal?

It’s time for “Ask a CISO”

On reddit, crossfire14 asks, "Why are helpdesk roles requiring 2-3 years experience? I thought they were entry level friendly? Im trying to start at lower positions to work my way into infosec yet I cant seem to qualify for any helpdesk roles because of exp?" I looked and actually these entry level positions are often asking for 3-5 years experience. Is this required? If not, what IS required for an entry level help desk role and what's the best way to show that?

"What's Worse?!"

Two horrible company debilitating options that have happened in real life. How would you survive either one?

Please, Enough. No, More

Our topic is Privileged Access Management, or PAM. What have Mike and Brandon heard enough about with PAM, and what would they like to hear a lot more?

The great CISO challenge

Outsider attacks, insider attacks, your assets, networks, people, and controls - what DOESN'T always change in security? If we assume that consistency is synonymous with simplicity, is it always an uphill battle to try to keep security simple especially if we're expanding into new services and cloud environments? Could this be why the foundations are still a struggle for everyone?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_05-12-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/look-freshmen-cisos-get-ready-to-pounce/)

What could possibly be a better way to welcome newly hired CISOs to the security community than with a shiny new sales pitch?

This week's episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest is Wayne Reynolds, CISO, Toyota Financial Savings Bank.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, AppOmni.

AppOmni

AppOmni is the leading provider of SaaS security and management platform for the enterprise. AppOmni provides unprecedented data access visibility, management and security of SaaS, enabling organizations to secure mission-critical and sensitive data. With AppOmni, organizations can automatically and continuously enforce rules for data access, data sharing and third-party applications.

On this week's episode

Why is everyone talking about this now?

Our guest, Wayne Reynolds posted the good news about his new CISO role. While he got the expected kudos, he also got lots of sales emails. In the short conversation we had in preparation for this episode, six pitches came in. He counted 731 vendor pitches in just five days. Given the situation, we have all seen an uptick in pitches, across all industries, not just cybersecurity. Vendors want to make some type of connection. If they weren't pitching, what would be a more acceptable outreach?

It’s time for “Ask a CISO”

What can security startups do to prepare for and prove to prospects that their solution won't slow down operations? Thanks to John Prokap, CISO, HarperCollins for pointing me to this great article on CIO.com by Yoav Leitersdorf of YL Ventures on mistakes security startups make. One concern was on the issue of startups losing this specific focus.

From the article, Peter Bodine, AllegisCyber Capital said, "I cannot stress how much of a difference productivity makes to the CISOs we consult with. So, as an investor, our attention is immediately piqued when we learn that a POC took fewer resources than a regular POC, because it often means that they developed their process early enough with a customer satisfaction person. We really don't see that very often, but when we have, we've written a check almost right on the spot, just because they take so much sand out of the gears and make it so much easier for a yes decision to occur.”

"What's Worse?!"

Do you want to be the one to reveal the cybersecurity incident or do you want somebody else to reveal it?

What's a CISO to do?

In the world of DevOps I'm constantly seeing the desire for developers to be security aware. But the point of DevOps is to be aggressively competitive. That's something I often don't see security people understanding or literally being aware of. Nicolas Valcarcel of NextRoll gave me heads up on a post by Mike Sherma of Square about having dev champions on the security team to advocate for the software engineering experience and design principles. Is this a good idea, and if so how would it be rolled out and what would be the benefits?

How to become a CISO

Prior to the unfortunate COVID-19 crisis we at the CISO Series were planning on hosting our very own one-day event to train security leaders. That event will happen eventually, but right now it's on hold. The whole idea is we were going to have a group of CISOs training a group of wannabe CISOs to be CISOs. Wayne is a strident mentor for wannabe CISO. At any time he's got 4 or 5 security professionals you're mentoring. We discuss the core skills security professionals are lacking to become CISOs, and what mentorship does to help you get those skills.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_05-05-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/cleaning-those-tough-to-reach-digital-identity-stains/)

We're trying to erase our past and it's becoming harder and harder to clean that history.

This week’s episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast features me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series, and co-host Mike Johnson. Our guest is Davi Ottenheimer (@daviottenheimer), vp of trust and digital ethics, Inrupt.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Reciprocity.

Reciprocity

ZenGRC by Reciprocity is a cloud-based GRC software that automates and simplifies compliance and risk management, solving critical problems at scale while customizing to your business needs. Adhering to the majority of regulations is a snap with pre-built templates and a unified system of record. Learn more at reciprocitylabs.com.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now?

On Quora, the question was asked, "What are some ways to protect identities on the Internet?" Mike and Davi offer their advice.

It's time for "Ask a CISO"

The Three As: Authentication, Authorization, and Auditing or Accounting. How do they interrelate? What's the order? And have we been doing it wrong?

It's time to play, "What's Worse?!"

How are you going to handle having a very well known exploit?

Close your eyes, breathe in. It's time for a little security philosophy.

On Quora, the question was asked, "What should I do to completely erase my digital identity for good?" It seems impossible, and probably is, but how what steps would one need to get rid of our online identities?

It's time to play, "What Is It and Why Do I Care?"

We're introducing a brand new game today called "What Is It and Why Do I Care?" Here's how the game is played. I have three pitches from three different vendors who are all in the same category, application security. I have asked the reps to first, in 25 words or less, just explain their category. So give me a simple explanation of application security. That's the "What Is It?" and then for the "Why Do I Care?" I asked them to explain what differentiates them or makes them unique also in 25 words or less. It is up to Mike and Davi to pick your favorite of each and explain why. I only reveal the winning contestants and their companies.

If you would like to be a contestant for "What Is It and Why Do I Care?" just go here and fill out the simple SurveyMonkey form.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_04-28-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/lets-just-dump-on-zooms-security-and-offer-no-solutions/)

Sure, we're all in this together, but isn't it fun just to trash a popular product's really bad security?

This week’s episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast features me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series, and co-host Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest is Brian Johnson, CEO and co-founder, DivvyCloud.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, DivvyCloud.

DivvyCloud

DivvyCloud provides continuous security and compliance across all CSPs and containers, including AWS, GCP, Azure, Ailibaba, and Kubernetes, providing a comprehensive view of what’s in your cloud, along with the tools and automation you need to manage it today, tomorrow, and into the future as your business grows and changes.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now?

Yaron Levi, CISO, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City a frequent and recent guest of the podcasts, had an incendiary post on LinkedIn where he challenged the long held belief in cybersecurity that "we're all in this together." Well that theory was put to the test with the outcries of Zoom's security and privacy flaws. Levi believes the security industry failed. Instead of trashing Zoom we should be offering suggestions of how they could fix a now universally used application. His challenge exploded online with over 200 comments. How could we/can we handle this situation better?

Look at this, another company breached

Oh Marriott. You blew it again. Two massive data breaches in two years. This one just gave too much access to too many customers from a branch office. Years ago this would be a front page story we'd be talking about for weeks if not months. Now they're just another breach and it doesn't seem that the affected users seem to care. How much damage are these breaches doing to companies if the customers have breach fatigue and can't see the damage immediately or even directly? And what percentage of these breaches do you believe are the result of poorly architected or implemented security programs?

It's time to play "What's Worse?!"

We get a chance to talk about Mike's favorite topic, toxic team members.

Please, Enough. No, More.

Today's topic is Identity Access Management or IAM. We discuss what we've heard enough about with IAM and what would we'd like to hear a lot more.

It’s time for “Ask a CISO”

We have a question from a listener, a college student. Here's her question:

"I'm a college student interested in majoring in cybersecurity. However I'm more of a people person and I'm afraid cybersecurity is just dealing with computers and having no people interaction. I'm just wondering what I should expect if I continue to pursue a cybersecurity major."

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_04-21-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/weve-got-a-dozen-features-only-two-work/)

If you don't focus too much on quality you'll really be impressed with the quantity of features our product has.

This week’s episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast features me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series, and co-host Mike Johnson. Our guest is Yaron Levi (@0xL3v1), CISO, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, DivvyCloud.

DivvyCloud

DivvyCloud provides continuous security and compliance across all CSPs and containers, including AWS, GCP, Azure, Ailibaba, and Kubernetes, providing a comprehensive view of what’s in your cloud, along with the tools and automation you need to manage it today, tomorrow, and into the future as your business grows and changes.

On this week's episode

Hey, you’re a CISO. What’s your take on this?

What's the value of a vendor-derived security meter? I sat down for a vendor presentation that was chock full of dashboards with meters. Some made sense and others appeared they were derived through some mysterious black box.

  1. When do you trust a vendor-derived meter? Can you? If not you, who are they for?
  2. Is it possible to ignore the absolute numbers in a vendor-derived formula and value only the changes over time?
  3. If you don't trust a vendor-derived meter, what meters do you create for yourself that you do trust?

How do you go about discovering new security solutions?

Tip of the hat to John Prokap, CISO, HarperCollins for forwarding me this excellent CIO.com article by Yoav Leitersdorf of YL Ventures.

How feature rich should a startup product be? In the article, Richard Rushing, CISO, Motorola Mobility talks about the need to trust a startup and the quality of each feature. “It's not enough to just focus on three out of five. All five have to be spot on because I can't miss, which means you can't miss."

How does a vendor avoid the classic case of trying to be everything to everybody and really you're serving no one?

What's Worse?

What's better for the business, compromised security occasionally, or unnecessary overhead that grows over time?

Close your eyes and visualize the perfect engagement

There's a well-known paradox in the healthcare industry when it comes to working with third party vendors. Because of HIPAA regulations there's a desire to keep information private, but at the same time, what about all these wonderful third party tools. Let them have access to our data.

What's the advice for vendors eager to work with a healthcare organization? How should they demonstrate their awareness of this paradox (e.g., scope of responsibilities, efficacy of controls, attestation, accountability)?

Why is everyone talking about this now?

We recorded this episode on March 30th as we talk about this next topic and that is should companies challenge their employees with a COVID-19 phishing test? Tip of the hat to Louisa Vogelenzang of Kroll who pointed me to this active discussion started by Grant McKechnie, Telstra, who asked this very question. There was a lot of debate. We debate both sides and offer an ultimate recommendation.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_04-14-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/lets-ask-cisos-if-theyre-concerned-about-data-security/)

I'm just learning about cybersecurity and I just realized that data security is really important. I don't know if everybody knows this. Do CISOs know? I should email all of them and ask.

This week’s episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast features me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series, and co-host Mike Johnson. Our guest is Steve Zalewski, deputy CISO, Levi Strauss & Co.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, DivvyCloud.

DivvyCloud

DivvyCloud provides continuous security and compliance across all CSPs and containers, including AWS, GCP, Azure, Ailibaba, and Kubernetes, providing a comprehensive view of what’s in your cloud, along with the tools and automation you need to manage it today, tomorrow, and into the future as your business grows and changes.

On this week's episode

Why is everyone talking about this now?

On Quora, the question was asked, "What is the most common unaddressed cybersecurity risk at companies?" Looking through the list, we've talked about all of these issues: people (malicious and negligence), program maturity, data privacy, and just basic network. They're all important, but we discuss which one we believe is least addressed.

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

What happens when a cloud provider breaks a service level agreement or SLA? On a recent episode of Defense in Depth, Taylor Lehmann, CISO, athenahealth said that putting ultimatums in SLAs just doesn't work in reality. No one really pulls the plug just because a cloud provider fell short on providing a certain level of uptime. We walk through the steps of the SLA. What's needed? What's too much? What do you do when something is violated? How do you right the ship and maintain the relationship?

What's Worse?

What happens when there's a political motivation to select a vendor?

What do you think of this pitch? and Why is this a bad pitch?

We put a good one and a bad one back to back so you can hear the range of what comes in a CISO's inbox.

Um… maybe you shouldn't have done that

As a security vendor, how do you catch yourself if you're cybersplaining?

Brian Haugli of Sidechannel Security offered the following definition: "When a salesperson or company representative explains in detail how a basic attack, ransomware, BEC, or other threat works to a CISO or current cybersecurity expert in order to push a sale."

From what I see, it appears that cybersplaining is the norm mostly for those who are very green in cybersecurity. I'll also say I've seen the complete opposite where someone at a much higher level assumes you're already in their head and agree to the same assumptions they have about cybersecurity as well. This plays out that they'll state an issue in cybersecurity and conclude with "right?" not waiting for an answer but just assuming you're on the same page so that they can go on with their rant.

What are ways to check yourself on both sides of the spectrum and what's the happy medium?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_04-07-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/i-dont-need-anymore-advice-on-how-to-work-remotely/)

It appears everyone has tips on how to work remotely. And after the deluge the past two weeks, most people have hit their wall. We don't care. We're pushing through with even more advice, just for security professionals.

This week's episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest is Brendan O'Connor, CEO, AppOmni.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, AppOmni.

AppOmni

AppOmni is the leading provider of SaaS security and management platform for the enterprise. AppOmni provides unprecedented data access visibility, management and security of SaaS, enabling organizations to secure mission-critical and sensitive data. With AppOmni, organizations can automatically and continuously enforce rules for data access, data sharing and third-party applications.

On this week's episode

Why is everyone talking about this now?

Adapting a line from Wendy Nather of Duo Security, what's the security poverty line for remote work? Gabriel Friedlander of Wizer started a thread of best advice for employees working at home. And then he compiled a list of the best tips. We talk about our favorite tips and add a few of our own.

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

Mike and our sponsored guest, Brendan, are both security leaders who have been thrust into managing their entire team virtually for an extended period of time. On top of that, their teams are going to have new pressures on them (e.g., kids at home) that are going to conflict with their ability to be efficient employees. We talk about what they're doing to adapt and their greatest concerns.

What's Worse?!

How are you dealing with patch management when you've got an all-remote workforce?

Please, Enough. No, More.

Our topic security cloud or specifically SaaS apps. What have we heard enough about on this topic and what would we like to hear a lot more?

Security Tip by Steve Prentice sponsored by ExtraHop

A serious confounding feature of public activities like elections and climate change discussions is the proliferation of actual fake news – stories created by bad actors and distributed by bots and which include deepfaked video and propaganda that lead audiences into a state of not knowing who to believe anymore. Security experts including the International Security Forum categorize this as a cyberthreat called Distortion, the loss of trust in the integrity of information.

As threat actors continue to hammer away at the cyber defenses however they can, it is extremely likely that Distortion attacks will be yet one more way of bringing organizations to a point of extreme vulnerability, just like ransomware and siegeware.

Though the Distortion content may be generated externally, it has the potential to be implanted in a company’s environment through phishing, MFA fraud and hacking, leading to media crises, drops in market valuation, destruction of public credibility and of internal stability.

More from our sponsor, ExtraHop.

Um… maybe you shouldn't have done that

Some really well-intentioned people are responsible for some really bad data practices. When I was in Tel Aviv I ran into a number of companies offering discovery solutions to show you where your data is, identify the sensitive data, the PII, and who has access. We learn a lot about sensitive data after it's breached, but there are also plenty of bad data practices happening internally which lend themselves to misuse or greater damage when there is a breach.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_03-31-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/the-department-of-no-thank-you/)

Just go to the front desk, sign in, and then the receptionist will say “no” in the most polite way possible.

This week's episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest is Nina Wyatt, CISO, Sunflower Bank.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, CyberArk.

CyberArk

At CyberArk, we believe that sharing insights and guidance across the CISO community will help strengthen security strategies and lead to better-protected organizations. CyberArk is committed to the continued exploration of topics that matter most to CISOs related to improving and integrating privileged access controls.

On this week's episode

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

The hot new cybersecurity threat is the Coronavirus. Not the virus itself or the possible fake phishing emails connected to it, but our overall fear and its impact on work. According to data from Boardish, there is a 42% increase over baseline in fear of immobility, or staff not being able to operate effectively remotely. To put that number in perspective, phishing and ransomware have each seen an 8% threat increase. I read immobility's huge number to mean companies are simply not prepared for how their staff may need to operate.

What we’ve got here is failure to communicate

What's the best way to say 'no' to a vendor? This was a question that was asked of me by Eric Gauthier, CISO at Scout Exchange. He wants to say no because his cloud business has no need for certain services, and he doesn't want to be rude, but just saying no doesn't seem to work. What are the most successful techniques of saying no to a security vendor? And what different kinds of "no" are there?

"What's Worse?!"

A tough decision on a company built on acquisitions.

Walk a mile in this CISO’s shoes

For many CISOs, there is a "What's Next?" as they don't necessarily expect "CISO" to be their final resting place professionally. Gary Hayslip, a CISO for Softbank Investment Advisers and frequent guest, wrote on both LinkedIn and Peerlyst about next steps for CISOs who want to move out of the role. The recommendations were other C-level positions, going independent, and starting a new company.

Security Tip by Steve Prentice, sponsored by ExtraHop

On January 2 of this year, parking meters in New York City stopped accepting credit and parking cards. At fault? Security software that had expired on the first day of 2020. Reminiscent of Y2K, this draws attention to the next two time-related bugs predicted for 2036 and 2038. The 2038 problem affects 32-bit systems that rely on timecodes that max out on January 19 of that year. A similar rollover is expected in 2036 for Network Time Protocol systems.

In all likelihood, affected systems either have been or will be replaced over the next 18 years, but the dangers still exist, in situations where vulnerable devices remain buried in a legacy system or in cases where advanced calculation of expiry dates are needed, or like New York City, where the upgrade was apparently overlooked.  It serves as a reminder that data security must look to its past while it plans for the future.

More from our sponsor ExtraHop.

Hey, you're a CISO. What's your take on this?

What's the impact of Europe's Right to Be Forgotten (RTFB)? It's been five years and Google has received ~3.2 million requests to delist URLs, from ~502,000 requesters. Forty five percent of those URLs met the criteria for delisting, according to Elie Bursztein, leader of Google's anti-abuse research team. Search engines and media sites hold the greatest responsibility, but what responsibility are companies forced to deal with and do they have the capacity to meet these requests?

 

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_03-24-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/we-pick-the-best-security-awareness-programs-for-your-staff-to-ignore/)

It doesn’t matter which security awareness training program you purchase. Your staff is going to do whatever they can to either tune out or get out of this annual compulsory exercise.

This week’s episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast was recording in front of a live audience at athenahealth in Watertown, Massachusetts. The recording features me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series, my guest co-host, Taylor Lehmann (@BostonCyberGuy), CISO, athenahealth, and guest Marnie Wilking, global head of security & technology risk management, Wayfair.

David Spark, producer of CISO Series, Taylor Lehmann, CISO, athenahealth, Marnie Wilking, global head of security & technology risk management, Wayfair

David Spark, producer of CISO Series, Taylor Lehmann, CISO, athenahealth, Marnie Wilking, global head of security & technology risk management, Wayfair

Check out all the photos from our recording.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsors, Check Point and Skybox Security.

Check Point TechnologiesIt's no secret that today's cyber attacks are targeted and sophisticated. Leaving even one point of entry vulnerable to a cyber attack endangers your entire organization. Check Point created the Secure Your Everything Resource Center to help you develop a comprehensive approach to prevent cyber attacks.

Skybox Security

At Skybox, we remove complexities from cybersecurity management. By integrating data, delivering new insights and unifying processes, we help you control security without restricting business agility. Our comprehensive solution unites security perspectives into the big picture, minimizes risk and empowers security programs to move to the next level.

On this week's episode

Pay attention, it’s security awareness training time

Jinan Budge of Forester finished a report on security awareness training programs. She found a trend that supported both the need for compliance and the need to actually train employees to be more security aware. We discuss what actually works to get people to be more aware of cybersecurity.

What do you think of this vendor marketing tactic?

At RSA, I talked to a vendor who told me about their new solution. It was so unique that Gartner was creating a new category for their product with yet another acronym. UGGH, another category for which you have to educate the market? And now you have to convince buyers to create a new line item for this category? And now what is that going to do to your marketing budget? It didn't take much convincing for me to point out that their product was just third-party risk management.

Admittedly, cybersecurity professionals love the new and shiny, but where do we draw the line about learning something new in cybersecurity and adding confusion to the marketplace?

It's time to play, "What's Worse?!"

Two rounds, lots of debate.

Where does a CISO begin?

When we hear about digital transformation, it is being done for purposes of speed, accuracy, and business competitiveness. Scott McCool, former CIO at Polycom was on our show Defense in Depth, disputed the common notion that security serves the business. Instead, he believes that security IS the business. And if you deem that to be true, then security can no longer can take a consultative role. It must take the role of brand and value building.

This is more than just a discussion of "shifting left." What are actions that security must take to make it clear that they are part of making the business fast, innovative, and competitive?

Um... maybe you shouldn't have done that

We tell talks of the worst proof of concept (POC) efforts.

Audience question speed round

We close out the show with a series of quick answers to audience questions.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_03-17-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/buy-our-product-we-have-no-idea-what-were-selling/)

What do you think of our confusing non-descriptive ad copy? We think it’s brilliant.

We’re patting ourselves on the back on the latest episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast. This episode was recorded in front of a live audience in NYC at the coworking space, Rise NYC. It's hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and JJ Agha, vp, head of information security at WeWork. Our guest is Mike Wilkes (@eclectiqus), CISO, ASCAP.

David Spark, producer, CISO Series, JJ Agha, vp, head of information security, WeWork, and Mike Wilkes, CISO, ASCAP

David Spark, producer, CISO Series, JJ Agha, vp, head of information security, WeWork, and Mike Wilkes, CISO, ASCAP

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Check Point

Check Point

It's no secret that today's cyber attacks are targeted and sophisticated. Leaving even one point of entry vulnerable to a cyber attack endangers your entire organization. Check Point created the Secure Your Everything Resource Center to help you develop a comprehensive approach to prevent cyber attacks.

On this week's episode

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

How well are you configuring your controls today and tomorrow? At RSA, I chatted with Adam Glick, CISO, Rocket Software. He said what he'd like is a tool to test the maturity of his deployed controls. How are his controls optimized over time? What does it looks like today vs. a year from now? How are we currently trying to solve that problem and what could be done to improve it?

Hey, you're a CISO, what's your take on this?

"Which cybersecurity certification should I get?" It's a question I see repeated often, especially on Quora and Peerlyst. Your best bet would probably be the one that most employers are looking for. And according to job board searches, conducted by Business News Daily, CISSP is the overwhelming favorite. Do our CISOs prefer certain certifications over others? Is it a requirement for hiring? And what does a security professional with certifications vs. experience tell us about that person?

What’s Worse?!

Split decisions on both and the audience plays along as well.

Is this the best use of my money?

"One of the common complaints I repeatedly hear is that cybersecurity vendors are not solving real problems. They're just looking to make money. I think that's a rather unfair blanket statement, but regardless, I hear it a lot.

I think why I hear that so often is that we're all in the cybersecurity fight together and we need to help each other. Helping each other is often done by participating in the open source community.

Why is it critical to contribute to the open source community?

Um... What do they do?

I read copy that appeared on various booths at RSA 2020. Most are confusing and non-descriptive and don’t appear to assume a pre-existing understanding of cybersecurity.

The expo hall at RSA is filled with security professionals who are already security minded. I honestly don't know exactly the reaction they're looking to get or what type of information these vendors are trying to convey.

Audience question speed round

We close out the show with a series of quick answers to audience questions.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_03-10-20_Live_NYC.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/were-market-leaders-in-customer-confusion/)

We could offer a simpler explanation of our technology, but if we confuse you we can charge a lot more.

This episode was recorded in front of a live audience at BsidesSF 2020 in San Francisco. It's hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest is Olivia Rose, former CISO, Mailchimp.

CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast live recording at BsidesSF 2020

Look at that screen! We were in a movie theater. Those small people in the lower right are David Spark, producer, CISO Series, Mike Johnson, co-host, CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast, and Olivia Rose, former CISO, Mailchimp. Photo credit to @ash1warya.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsors, Vulcan Cyber and CyberArk.

Vulcan CyberVulcan is a vulnerability management platform built for remediation. By orchestrating the entire remediation process, Vulcan ensures that vulnerabilities aren’t just found, they’re fixed. Pioneering a remediation orchestration approach, the platform enables security, operational and business teams to effectively remediate cyber risks at scale.

CyberArk

At CyberArk, we believe that sharing insights and guidance across the CISO community will help strengthen security strategies and lead to better-protected organizations. CyberArk is committed to the continued exploration of topics that matter most to CISOs related to improving and integrating privileged access controls.

On this week's episode

How to become a CISO

What is some actionable "let's start today" advice. What could an individual do right now to develop the skills to be a cyber leader and make it clear to management, that's what they're gunning for?

What we’ve got here is failure to communicate

If all vendors stopped sending cold emails, which is what we constantly hear CISOs say they should do, how should they spend their time and money instead to greatly improve their success? If a CISO played the role of a vendor, which happens often, what should you do, to get to you?

What's Worse?!

We play TWO rounds.

What do you think of this vendor marketing tactic?

According to a recent study by Valimail, CISOs are very suspect of security vendors' claims. In general, the numbers are horrible for vendor credibility. Close to half of security professionals claim the following:

  • Vendors' tech and explanation are confusing
  • Practitioners have a hard time seeing and measuring value
  • Practitioners don't know how a vendor's product will stay valid on their security roadmap.
  •  

What could cybersecurity vendors do to make their claims more believable?

Close your eyes and visualize the perfect engagement

Rafal Los, Armor Cloud Security asked, "If you could implement one thing in your organization that would receive universal adoption without push-back, what would it be?" The question, which seems reasonable, but in the security world often feels impossible, generated a ton of responses on both LinkedIn and Twitter. Many wanted company-wide adoption of one solution, such as MFA or vulnerability management. Others wanted widespread and ongoing security education. Our CISOs debate the one pushback-free solution that would yield the greatest results.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_03-03-20_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 5:30am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/last-chance-to-vote-for-most-stressed-out-ciso/)

Think you or your CISO has what it take to shoulder all the tension, risk, and security issues of your organization? You may be a perfect candidate for "Most Stressed Out CISO".

This episode was recorded in person at Zenefits' offices in San Francisco. It's hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest is Keith McCartney (@kmflgator), CISO, Zenefits.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is KeithMcCartney_MikeJohnson_1.jpg

Keith McCartney, CISO, Zenefits and Mike Johnson, co-host,
CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, CyberArk

CyberArk

At CyberArk, we believe that sharing insights and guidance across the CISO community will help strengthen security strategies and lead to better-protected organizations. CyberArk is committed to the continued exploration of topics that matter most to CISOs related to improving and integrating privileged access controls.

On this week's episode

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

CISO Stress. We've talked about it before on the show, and now Nominet just released a new study that claims stress levels are increasing.

  • 8% of CISOs said work stress has had a detrimental impact on their mental health, almost twice as high as last year (27%).
  • 31% of CISOs said that stress had affected their ability to do their job.
  • Almost all surveyed CISOs (90%) said they’d take a pay cut if it improved their work-life balance.

How could a CISO negotiate better work/life balance upfront and have either of our CISOs done it?

Hey, you're a CISO. What's your take on this?

Gary Hayslip shared this Peerlyst article by Ian Barwise of Morgan Computer Services about the incredible array of OSINT tools. What OSINT tools do our CISOs find most valuable and for what purposes.

What's Worse?!

A little too much agreement on this week's "What's Worse?!"

Here's some surprising research

Why are cloud security positions so much harder to fill? Robert Herjavec of the Herjavec Group posted a number of disturbing hiring statistics. Most notably was one from Cyber Seek that stated jobs requesting public cloud security skills remain open 79 days on average — longer than almost any other IT skills. Why isn't supply meeting demand? Why is it such a difficult security skill to find? And how easy and quickly can you train for it?

Security tip sponsored by ExtraHop

EKANS is the backward spelling of SNAKE. It is also the name of new ransomware code that targets the industrial control systems in oil refineries and power grids. Not only does it extort a ransom, it also has the ability to destroy software components that do things like monitor the status of a pipeline, or similar critical functions in a power grid or utility. A recently documented attack on Bahrain’s national oil company reveals the architecture and deployment of EKANS not to be the work of a hostile nation-state, but of cybercriminals.

The chilling message behind that, of course, is that penetrating and sabotaging critical components of a country’s infrastructure is no longer exclusive to sophisticated national intelligence agencies. Lower level criminal agencies may have motives that are far less predictable and trackable, and when combined with the complexities of an industrial control system, these may have cascading effects beyond the wildest dreams of the instigators themselves.

More from our sponsor ExtraHop.

What do you think of this pitch?

We get a pitch with some suggestions on how best to improve the pitch. We want more pitches!

 

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_02-25-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 5:00am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/lets-blow-our-entire-marketing-budget-at-rsa/)

Security professionals only think about security one week out of the year, right? So let's drop every single dollar we have budgeted for marketing on the last week of February. Whaddya say?

This episode was recorded in person at Intel's offices in Santa Clara, California. This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest is Tom Garrison (@tommgarrison), vp and gm of client security strategy at Intel (@IntelNews).

David Spark, CISO Series, Tom Garrison, Intel, and Mike Johnson, CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast

David Spark, CISO Series, Tom Garrison, Intel, and Mike Johnson,
CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Intel.

Intel

The globalization of technology has created an environment of complicated supply chains with limited transparency. Intel’s Compute Lifecycle Assurance (CLA) initiative solves this through a range and tools and solutions that deliver assurances of integrity throughout the entire lifetime of a platform --from build to retire.

On this week's episode

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

Next week is RSA and by podcast law we're required to talk about it. We offer up tips on maximizing the following: education, engagement, and follow up.

What’s the return on investment?

On Peerlyst, John Mueller, a security architect with the US Navy, suggested ways to use incident response metrics to help determine whether your cybersecurity program is improving. But as Mueller points out, it's not easy as you could fool yourself into believing you're doing well if you don't valuable discovery tools. We discuss methods to measure improvements in security programs.

What's Worse?!

A really tough one that delivers a split decision.

Please, enough. No, more.

Our topic is trust and hardware manufactures. We discuss what we've heard enough about with trusting hardware manufacturers of tech products, and then we discuss what we'd like to hear a lot more.

Cloud Security Tip sponsored by ExtraHop

The fable of Walt Disney having been cryogenically frozen to be revived in an age where the science to do so existed is just that – a fable. But there is still something to be taken from that when it comes to documents archived on the cloud or consigned to data landfills. Just because encrypted data cannot be easily decrypted by hackers using today’s tools, that doesn’t mean tomorrow’s tools can’t do the job and revive the information stored inside.

When threat actors take it upon themselves to steal data, through hacking, ransomware, or AI, they might, of course be searching for material that is immediately exploitable, such personal data, or data that has immediate value in being returned or unlocked as in the case of ransomware.

But other players are in it for the long game, counting on the fact that the inexorable momentum of progress will lead to a decryption solution in time for stolen archived data to still be of use for future crimes, frauds and deep fakery.

More from our sponsor ExtraHop.

Close your eyes. Breathe in. It’s time for a little security philosophy.

I got back from Tel Aviv where cybersecurity professionals find themselves innovating out of necessity. They're often short on resources. We discuss the kinds of exercises we've tried to help ourselves and our team to think creatively about cybersecurity.

One suggestion is the interrogation technique of "Five Whys" to get at the root reason of why we make our choices.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_02-18-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 5:30am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/empowered-working-together-to-pile-on-the-cyber-guilt/)

We can all be more secure if we work together as a team to shame those who don't agree with how we approach security.

This week's episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest is Chris Hatter, CISO, Nielsen.

On this week's episode

Mike's confused. Let's help him out.

Mike inspired this brand new segment with his question to the LinkedIn community, asking what's the big deal with 5G security? The story I heard about 5G is just sheer volume over unsecured networks. But Mike said, we've been dealing with unsecured networks since 2G and 3G and we dealt with them using Transport Layer Security or TLS, and implementing other services such as multi-factor authentication or MFA. Mike called out to the community to clue him in as to why we should be more concerned with 5G.

Does shaming improve security?

Thanks to Mark Eggleston, CISO, Health Partners Plans for alerting me to Chris Castaldo, CISO of Dataminr, and his post about Rob Chahin's "Single Sign-On or SSO Wall of Shame". Chahin, who is the head of security at Eero, purports that SSO should be a standard feature in applications and websites that allow for secure sign on through third party identity services, such as Google and Okta. Single sign-on is a significant boon for security and management simplicity and Chahin argues that many companies force users to pay dearly to enable SSO.

What's Worse?!

A grand financial decision in this scenario.

Is this the best solution?

According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, there is an ever slight trend of CISOs moving away from reporting to the CIO, opting instead to report directly to the CEO. Why is this trend happening? What are the benefits and disadvantages?

Security Tip by Steve Prentice sponsored by ExtraHop

 

With hacks and breaches becoming all too commonplace and even encrypted data still vulnerable to hackers who can read and copy it, focus is now being placed on Quantum Communication as a potential next option. This is a technique that encodes data into photons of light, each of which can carry multiple copies of ones and zeroes simultaneously, but which collapses into a single one-and-zero if tampered with. Basically, the scrambling of data to an unusable format.

Although Quantum communication has been development for a few years, researchers in China have apparently already outfitted a fleet of drones that will soon be able to communicate upwards to its already launched Quantum satellites and downwards to ground stations while remaining stable in flight.

This paves the way for the field of quantum teleportation, a glamorous term whose uses and actual development are no longer just the realm of science fiction. For data at least.

More from our sponsor ExtraHop.

Close your eyes. Breathe in. It’s time for a little security philosophy.

Simon Goldsmith, adidas, said, "I’ve been having some success in replacing risk with uncertainty. By which I mean not having a threat, vulnerability or impact made tangible creates uncertainty which is next to impossible to factor into any modern decision making process. If I make it tangible, it becomes a risk and I can help you make a better decision. Puts value on turning uncertainty to risk and fights FUD."

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_02-11-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 5:30am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/youre-mistaken-im-not-annoying-its-chutzpah/)

We're pushing just to the edge of irritation on the latest episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast.

This episode was recorded in front of a live audience in Tel Aviv on the eve of the 2020 Cybertech conference. Special thanks to Glilot Capital for hosting this event.

This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and my special guest co-host, Bobby Ford, global CISO for Unilever. Our guest is John Meakin, veteran financial CISO, and currently CISO for Equiniti.

CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast panel at live audience recording in Tel Aviv

David Spark, producer, CISO Series, Bobby Ford, CISO, Unilver, and John Meakin, CISO, Equiniti.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsors, Polyrize and Intsights.

Polyrize

As newly adopted SaaS and IaaS services add an additional layer of risk for security teams, Polyrize provides a cloud-centric approach to simplifying the task of protecting user identities and their access across the public cloud by right-sizing their privileges and continuously protecting them through a unified authorization model.

IntSights

IntSights is revolutionizing cybersecurity operations with the industry’s only all-in-one external threat protection platform designed to neutralize cyberattacks outside the wire. Our unique cyber reconnaissance capabilities enable continuous monitoring of an enterprise’s external digital profile across the clear, deep, and dark web to identify emerging threats and orchestrate proactive response. To learn more, visit intsights.com.

On this week's episode

How do you go about discovering new security solutions?

In an article on LinkedIn entitled, "Why do CISOs take a vendor meeting?" Dutch Schwartz, of AWS said that they take meetings per a recommendation of their staff, their peers, or they have an explicit problem that they've already researched, or they have known unknowns. Are those the reasons to take a meeting with a security vendor? We discuss what meetings CISOs take, and which ones are the most attractive.

It's time for "Ask a CISO"

Israel is known for a thriving startup community. But what I always see is cross pollination between Israel and Silicon Valley when it comes to startups. We discuss what Israeli startups can learn from Silicon Valley and vice versa.

What's Worse?!

We've got two rounds. One agreement and one split vote.

It’s time to measure the risk

Five years ago I wrote an article for CIO.com about the greatest myths of cloud security, The first myth was the cloud is inherently insecure. And the other 19 are ones I'm still hearing today. My conclusion for the whole article was if you can overcome these myths about cloud security, you can reduce risk. In this segment we dispel cloud security myths and explain how the cloud helps reduce risk possibly in ways many of us are not aware.

Close your eyes. Breathe in. It’s time for a little security philosophy.

On this podcast we talk a lot about CISOs needing to understand the business. In a thought-provoking post on Peerlyst, Eh-den Biber, a student of information security at Royal Holloway, University of London, noted that the job of cybsecurity is more than that. It's about understanding the flow of business and being present in the individuals' lives and their stories. We discuss the importance of being present in your users' lives.

It's time for the audience question speed round

The audience has questions and our CISOs have answers. We get through a lot really quickly.

 

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_Tel_Aviv_02-04-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 5:30am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/revisiting-a-whole-career-of-cyber-screw-ups/)

This episode was recorded in front of a live audience at Malwarebytes' offices in Santa Clara, California for the Silicon Valley ISSA chapter meeting. This episode is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest is Peter Liebert, former CISO, state of California. Peter is now an independent consultant and commander of cyber operations for California State Guard.

Live recording at SV ISSA event on 01-21-20

(left to right) David Spark, producer, CISO Series, Mike Johnson, co-host, CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast, and Peter Liebert, commander, cyber operations, California State Guard

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Malwarebytes.

Malwarebytes

Malwarebytes secures endpoints, making workplaces resilient. Our adaptive cyber protection predicts and detects attacks with multi-layer detection across the kill chain. We enable active threat response with machine learning that is actionable and automated, allowing for full recovery when a compromise occurs. We empower enterprise endpoint orchestration across siloed IT and Security organizations, simplifying security management and making responses effective. Malwarebytes makes endpoints resilient so workplaces can protect and remediate, and employees can regain control of their digital lives.

On this week's episode

Why is everybody talking about this now?

Chris Roberts of Attivo Networks posted about his video game addiction as he admitted one certain game ate up 475 hours of his life. He really struck a chord with the community as he got hundreds of comments of people admitting to the same but also recognizing that video games are great stress relievers and that the problem solving in games actually helps keep your mind sharp. There is the obvious need for a break, but is there a correlation between how gaming in any form can help someone with their job in cybersecurity?

Hey, you're a CISO, what's your take on this?'

Are we doing a good job defining the available jobs in cybersecurity? The brand that we see out there is the image of the hacker and the hoodie. In a post on Peerlyst, Nathan Chung lists off eleven other cybersecurity jobs that don't fall under that well known cybersecurity trope. Jobs such as data privacy lawyers, data scientists developing AI and machine learning algorithms, law enforcement, auditors who work on compliance, and even project managers.

We discuss some of the concrete ways to explain the other lesser known opportunities in cybersecurity.

What's Worse?!

We play two rounds with the CISOs.

Um… maybe you shouldn't have done that

In an article on Peerlyst, cybersecurity writer Kim Crawley, asked her followers on Twitter, "What mistakes have you made over the course of your career that you would recommend newbies avoid?" There was some great advice in here. We discuss our favorite pieces of advice from the list and our CISO admit what is the mistake they've made in their cybersecurity career that they specifically recommend newbies avoid.

We’ve got listeners, and they’ve got questions

Chris Hill of Check Point Software, asked, "How can non-technical people working their way up in the security industry improve their knowledge and abilities from a CISO perspective." Chris is a newbie and he wants advice on being a “trusted advisor” and he's trying to figure out the best/most efficient way to get there.

It's time for the audience question speed round

We go through a ton of questions the audience has for our CISOs

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_Live_01-28-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 1:14am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/debunking-the-misused-chased-by-bear-cybersecurity-metaphor/)

We don't want anyone to be caught by the bear on the latest episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast.

This episode was recorded in person in San Francisco. It is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our sponsored guest this week is Elliot Lewis (@ElliotDLewis), CEO, Encryptics.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Encryptics.

Encryptics

Now you can share data without ever losing control of it. Our advanced architecture makes data self-protecting, intelligent and self-aware – wherever it goes, no matter who has it. Our .SAFE patented multi-key technology enables data to evaluate its own safety conditions, including geo-sensing, recipient authentication, and policy changes from its owner. Contact Encryptics today and see for yourself.

On this week's episode

Is this the best solution?

On LinkedIn, Rich Malewicz of Wizer opened up a discussion of security is really just about making the lives difficult for attackers, or more difficult than another target. Rui Santos summed Rich's theory succinctly, "you don't have to be Fort Knox, just make it not worth the effort of hacking your organization."

Let's dive into the specifics of this. Provide some examples of how you architect a security program that makes it too difficult or too costly for an attacker. Obviously, this would change given the asset you're trying to protect.

The great CISO challenge

Brad Green, Palo Alto Networks, asks, "What are the most important functions of the SOC (security operations center), and what are the most important activities that support them?

What's Worse?!

As always, both options stink, but one is worse.

Please, Enough. No, More.

Today's topic is data security. What have you heard enough about with data security, and what would you like to hear a lot more? Mike?

Security Tip by Steve Prentice, brought to you by ExtraHop

Communicating cyberthreats to the general public has always been a challenge for cybersecurity specialists, especially when it comes to eliciting cooperation in areas like cyberhygiene. Sometimes it helps to give people an awareness that the need for proactive security doesn’t exist only on screens, but everywhere.

One fascinating example of this can be seen in the research of Dina Katabi of MIT, who has shown how WiFi signals can be monitored – not for their content, but as a form of radar that can see through walls, and which can accurately observe people physically moving around, or even detecting heartbeats and sleep patterns. Remote espionage opens up all kinds of opportunities for bad actors to build ergonomic profiles of anyone and then deploy AI and ML enabled analysis to influence and impersonate them.

Showing people just how many different dimensions can be used in cybercrime may one day shift public perception of cybersecurity into the center spotlight where it belongs.

More from our sponsor ExtraHop.

There’s got to be a better way to handle this

For years security professionals have talked about trying to secure the exponentially expanding surface area. One way to simplify, that we've all heard before, is driving security to the data level. Could we let networks run wild, within reason, and just have a data-security first approach? How is that different from zero trust, if at all? To what extent does this work/not work?

We've all been having conversations about encryption for decades. It's not a new story. But it's still not universally used. There are billions of user accounts available in open text. After decades, why has the encryption story still not been getting through? What's holding back universal usage?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_01-21-2020_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 5:30am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/we-put-the-fun-in-infunsec/)

We're cranking up the entertainment value on the latest episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast.

This episode was recorded in person in San Francisco. It is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Adrian Ludwig, CISO, Atlassian.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Encryptics.

Encryptics

Now you can share data without ever losing control of it. Our advanced architecture makes data self-protecting, intelligent and self-aware – wherever it goes, no matter who has it. Our .SAFE patented multi-key technology enables data to evaluate its own safety conditions, including geo-sensing, recipient authentication, and policy changes from its owner. Contact Encryptics today and see for yourself.

On this week's episode

Close your eyes and visualize the perfect engagement

What should a CISO's relationship with the board be and how much should a CISO be involved in business decisions? According to a Kaspersky survey, 58% of CISOs say they're adequately involved in business decision making. 34% say they're summoned by the board for data/security related manners. 74% of CISOs are not part of the board and of that group, Of that group, 25% think they should be. What are the pros and cons of a CISO being heavily involved in the business?

The great CISO challenge

On Dark Reading, Joan Goodchild asked CISOs what were their New Year's resolution. Most said obvious stuff about visibility, being a business enabler, work on human element, and privacy. But I was most intrigued by Jason Haward Grau, CISO of PAS Global, who said he wanted to make security a little more fun. Keeping it fun and interesting is my obsession with this show. If you want to attract, and more importantly retain, security talent, a little bit of fun is critical. So what is currently fun about cybersecurity and what can CISOs do to make it more fun?

What's Worse?!

First time Mike Johnson admits to being wrong!

Looking down the security roadmap

On LinkedIn, Mike recommended that security professionals line up tools with their comparable threat models, and then compare that list with their company's actual threat models. Mike admittedly offered the advice but never actually had done itself until he wrote the post and then he started. We delve into what actually happened and how one could actually do it.

Security Tip by Steve Prentice, brought to you by ExtraHop

The Cyber Defense Matrix is a handy, yet easy to use grid plan that helps IT and cybersecurity professionals formulate a plan of proactive defense and effective response. Devised by security specialist Sounil Yu and discussed in detail on the October 17, 2019 episode of Defense in Depth, the matrix continues to gain ground as a vital tool for not only understanding the required spread of technologies, people and process, but also in performing gap analysis and crisis planning.

The matrix creates a logical construct across two axes, creating a five by five fill-in grid.

Although some experts debate whether it is sufficiently broad in scope, cybersecurity organizations such as OWASP tend to agree that its role in organizing a jumble of concepts products and terminologies into a coherent inventory helps cybersecurity specialists measure their security coverage, discover gaps in their IT strategy, and create a better project plan.

More from our sponsor ExtraHop.

And now, a listener drops some serious knowledge

"Sandor Slijderink (SLY-DUR-INK), CISO at undisclosed company, offered a quick tip on a new phishing scam.

Type in some text that looks like a foreign language, then create a hyperlink that reads:
""See translation""

We discuss some attack vectors that we think others may not be fully aware of but need to pay attention.

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_01-14-2019_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 5:30am PDT

All links and images for this episode can be found on CISO Series (https://cisoseries.com/we-lower-the-security-and-pass-the-savings-on-to-you/)

We're racing to the bottom in terms of price and security on the latest episode of CISO/Security Vendor Relationship Podcast.

This episode was recorded in person in San Francisco. It is hosted by me, David Spark (@dspark), producer of CISO Series and founder of Spark Media Solutions and Mike Johnson. Our guest this week is Seth Rosenblatt (@sethr), editor-in-chief, The Parallax.

Thanks to this week's podcast sponsor, Encryptics.

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On this week's episode

Are we making the situation better or worse?

Are big Internet giants' privacy violations thwarting startup innovation? That's been presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren's argument, and it's why she wants to break up companies like Facebook and Google for what she sees as anti-competitive practices. According to Seth Roseblatt's article, it appears all of a sudden Facebook and Google are very concerned about privacy.

Nine years ago, I remember seeing Eric Schmidt, then CEO of Google, proudly admit that they tracked people's movements so thoroughly that they can accurately predict where you're going to go next. Nobody blinked about the privacy implications. But today, users are upset but they don't seem to be leaving these services at all. Is it all talk on both sides? Have you seen any movement to improve privacy by these companies and would regulation be the only answer? And heck, what would be regulated?

Here's some surprising research

Over the past 15 years, home WiFi routers have been manufactured to be less secure. Seth reported on this study by the Cyber Independent Testing Lab, which we also discussed on an episode of Defense in Depth. The most notorious weakening is the use of default passwords, but there's a host of other firmware features that don't get updated. Is there any rationale to why this happens? And has this study done anything to turn things around?

Is this a cybersecurity disinformation campaign?

Fighting "fake news" like it's malware. In Seth's story, he noted there are structural and distribution similarities. I envision there are some similarities between fake news and adware which isn't necessarily designed for negative intent. Fake news appears to be an abuse of our constitutional acceptance of free speech. How are security tactics being used to thwart fake news and how successful is it?

When you set up your new home assistant, try not to position it close to a window, because someone across the street might be preparing to send voice commands, such as “open the garage door” by way of a laser beam.

Researchers from the University of Michigan and The University of Electro-Communications in Tokyo have successfully used laser light to inject malicious commands into smart speakers, tablets, and phones across large distances and through glass windows. They use standard wake commands modulated from audio signals and pair them with brute forcing of PINS where necessary.

They have also been successful in eavesdropping, and in unlocking and starting cars.

Their research shows how easy it is and will be to use lasers to not only penetrate connected devices but to deploy acoustic injection attacks that overwhelm motion detectors and other sensors. More information including access to the white paper is available at lightcommands.com.

More from our sponsor ExtraHop.

Look at this, another company got breached

Tip of the hat to Malcolm Harkins at Cymatic for posting this story on Forbes by Tony Bradley of Alert Logic who offers a rather pessimistic view of the cybersecurity industry.

It's broken, argues Bradley. We spend fortunes on tools and yet still get hacked year over year using the same tools. The article quotes Matt Moynahan, CEO, Forcepoint, who said we wrongly think of security as an "us" vs. "them" theory or "keeping people out" when in actuality most hacks are because someone got access to legitimate user credentials, or a user within our organization did something unintentional or potentially malicious. Are we wrongheaded about how we envision cybersecurity, and if so, is there a new overarching philosophy we should be embracing?

Direct download: CISO_Vendor_01-07-2019_FINAL.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 5:30am PDT