Striving for the Gold Medal in Cybersecurity
It takes guts for traditional security integrators to face the fact that they must become cyber experts. But without question they need a goal, or they will risk falling short of winning their clients’ business.
It’s been a fun couple of weeks in August. At the time of this writing, the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro are in full swing. Some of my favorites to watch: diving, athletics (100 meter sprint, hurdles, javelin throw, high-jump), rowing, and of course, gymnastics.
Like many people, I enjoy watching the competition as much as I like listening to the athletes speak about their Olympic experiences. At the website, www.Rio2016.com, I read some newsworthy quotes from current and former Olympians. I like what Colombia’s Oscar Figueroa, silver medal winner in weightlifting at the 2012 London Olympic Games, said: “You need to have guts when you’re up against it. You need a dream, a goal, and above all your family.”
I think it also takes guts and a goal for security integrators to move into the “brave new world” of cybersecurity. “In the past people would talk about cyber as firewalls and all the dark things that happen in data centers,” said Bryan Viau, COO, VTI Security, Burnsville, Minn., featured on this month’s cover. “Now manufacturers and CEOs have woken up and said, ‘These panels and cameras and readers are also portals into our networks.’” Stephen Fisher, VTI’s director of business development, added, “We are no longer hanging cameras; we are actually opening doors to the network at our client’s business.”
SDM Senior Editor, Karyn Hodgson, addresses the security integrator’s role in cybersecurity in this month’s cover story, “The ‘Brave New World’ of Cybersecurity,” beginning on page 56. Hodgson states, “Integrators are aware that anything they put on the network could be vulnerable to cyberattack, but many are stymied by where to start to create a plan to fix it. Experts from inside and outside the industry know how.”
With the ideas and resources presented in the article, the security integrator can not only assess his cyber-readiness, but he can actually work toward monetizing cybersecurity. Imagine being able to produce a stream of revenue from what is considered to be a vulnerability.
Hodgson asked PSA Security Network’s Bill Bozeman if he sees cybersecurity as an opportunity for integrators. His response: I really believe this is a game changer, just like when we went from tape to digital, or coax to Cat 6 and analog to IP. This is one of those opportunities or challenges. Watch that movie ‘Zero Days.’ Those who choose to turn away, what an amazing loss that is.”
In August we learned that SDM’s former Editor, Bill Zalud, passed away. Bill was only 69, and still active as a journalist. He served as editor emeritus of SecurityMagazine (SDM’s sister publication), to which he was a frequent contributing writer.
I first met Bill in 1987 when both SDM and Security were owned by Cahners Publishing, before both were sold to BNP Media in 2000. I quickly learned that I was fortunate to be on his team. Bill had a wealth of knowledge, which he always generously shared, about things such as copyright law, research-based journalism, little known but promising technologies, and business partnerships — to name just a few.
He also was great at finding an angle to a story that no one else had, and at providing the writers on our staff with unique sources they could quote, which again, no one else seemed to know about — a competitive advantage. As well, Bill was kind-hearted and humorous! I will miss him dearly.
You may read more commentary about Bill Zalud on page 17 in this issue.