[00:00:00] James Christiansen: I mean, I think you have to be an innovator to be a leader. You have to keep challenging the status quo. You have to keep challenging yesterday's thoughts. That's what we really did when we sat down as a team started listening to our colleagues and taking that input along with their own cost to really develop out these principles, challenging the way we've been doing things and really thinking about, how does this digitalization is changing us and our organization.
[00:00:34] Producer:Hello, and welcome to security visionaries hosted by Jason Clark, chief security officer and chief strategy officer at Netskope. You just heard from James Christianson, the vice president, chief information security officer at Netskope on this show. You'll hear from world-class practitioners and thought leaders like James on how they stay on top of the game in networking and cloud security. You're about to listen to the second half of a two-part discussion on the principles of security transformation. In this half, Jason and Erick are joined by colleagues, James Christianson, the Vice President, Chief Information Security Officer at Netskope. James Robinson, deputy chief information security officer at Netskope and Lamont Orange, Chief Information Security Officer at Netskope. The following discussion and the security visionaries podcast are part of the security transformation playbook, a set of new resources from Netskope and some of the industry's most forward thinking leaders examining the most important issues in security today, before we dive in, here's a brief word from our sponsors.
[00:01:38] Sponsor: The Security Visionaries podcast is powered by the team at Netskope. Netskope is the SASE leader. Offering everything you need to provide a fast data centric and cloud smart user experience at the speed of business today. Learn more at netskope.com
[00:01:57] Producer: without further ado, please enjoy episode two of security visionaries with your host, Jason Clark.
[00:02:05] Jason Clark: In the last episode, Erick and I talked about the genesis for the security transformation project and explained that there are several principles for the future that we should work on, right. 10 principles that we're going to do a deep dive on specifically today. And so I'm joined first by Erick, Rudiak, Erick, how are you?
[00:02:24] Erickk Rudiak: Hi Jason. Glad to be back. Thank you so much for having me on.
[00:02:29] Jason Clark: Happy to have you. And Lamont Orange.
[00:02:31] Lamont Orange: Hey Jason, thanks for having me on the show. I look forward to the conversation.
[00:02:36] Jason Clark: And James Robinson.
James Robinson: Hey, happy to be here. Thanks.
Jason Clark: And James Christiansen.
James Christiansen: Let’s rock and roll!
Jason Clark: So guys, welcome. Welcome to the conversation. How you guys doing? Are you ready?
James Robinson: I'm ready. Let's do it.
Jason Clark: Awesome. Lamont, I know that you, uh, this morning had to, uh, you already were on stage on a panel conversation. You had to race to this conversation. So thank you for that, but it's gonna, it's probably easy and nice to do back to back.
[00:03:06] Lamont Orange: Definitely. So my pleasure.
[00:03:09] Jason Clark: So we altogether, you know, over the last couple of years had worked on. Really with the industry, right. Spending time on, you know, hundreds of, of round table dinners and, and workshops and, you know, surveys and one-on-one conversations, right. Trying to collect. What is the future of security look like? And in this new world, Kind of digital transformation is just happening period. Right. For every organization. And security is kind of in this upside down world where we're trying to, you know, security teams are being stretched beyond belief. Right. And, and trying to keep up. So how are they going to be able to perform and gain leverage. In this new model, right? Cause they're obviously stressed and, um, they're looking at the legacy technology architectures and, and in the end, kind of these, these past ways that we've done stuff for the last 25 years, that we've all been working in this industry or more, we spent time together on 10 principles for the future. Right. And then obviously the rest of the security transformation playbook as part of, what does, if I need to get to by 20, 25 and beyond. So, you know, all of you have helped tremendous amount in this, right? And so just look for each of you to, to give, you know, your context to each principle, as we talk to them and experiences that you've had in these conversations, when these, you know, I'd say over, gosh, probably well over a thousand CISOs and CIO conversations that we. On this. Right. But also in your experiences as CISOs in any, you know, past lives as, as operating other organizations, as CISOs write about the past, moving to the future. So with that, you know, I'm going to start off with the principle one, right? Principle one is challenge all your existing principals, right? So what, what principles do you believe needs to be challenged from the past?
[00:05:04] James Christiansen: Yeah, you know, I really am. I always challenge everything. I think every day. I mean, I think you have to be an innovator to be a leader. You have to keep challenging status quo. You have to keep challenging yesterday's thoughts. And I think that's what we really did when we sat down. And as a team started listening to our colleagues and taking that input along with our own thoughts to really develop out these principles, it was really about challenging status quo. It's about challenging the way we've been doing things and really thinking about how business digitalization is changing us and our organizations, and certainly the, the quick movement to work from anywhere and what that's doing to the things we have to do as we look for.
[00:05:51] Jason Clark: What about the principle of, if it's not broke, don't fix it.
[00:05:54] James Christiansen: Yeah. I don't know. I've always been really good at breaking things, so I'm not the right guy to ask.
[00:06:00] Lamont Orange: And when you look at digital transformation, honestly, you're probably sanded. It's already broken. From how you want to move the organization forward so that, that you have to say that it is broken already, and it does need fixing because we're still having an escalated amount of attacks from attackers. They’re still being successful and are being successful at a high velocity rate. So we must come back to, it's already broken. Now it's how do we plant a seed and move forward?
[00:06:32] Jason Clark: So James, you’re a product security and application, you know, expert. And in my view, right, you've been doing it for a very long time for very large organizations. Well, how are the principals changed? From an app sec or product security or software pipeline standpoint.
[00:06:50] James Robinson: Yeah, one, the one that came to mind that, uh, I think it also got looped into a different principle was that trust, but verify that was one that for a long, long, long time we relied on the all through out the product security AppSec domain. And I think that now that really gets challenged a lot. That's one that was actually a very comfortable principle. Um, and one that, that I've relied on for many, many years that now it just totally gets broken, totally gets challenged and know that there's a lot of conversations about zero trust principles and it having its own. But it's really the zero trust architectures
[00:07:24] Jason Clark: That’s a good point. Trust, but verify has changed into zero trust. Right? That's that's a very good point. So principle two. Stop buying black box solutions and buy open and integrated. So I'd like to kind of say that in general vendors have bought a lot or technology companies, right, they’ve bought a lot of companies and integrated them, or they claim to integrate them. But generally the integration is a price list and the sales person selling to you. So overall, what's your guys' view on how the, how the industry needs to change in the way that we procure technologies?
[00:07:59] James Robinson: I'm jumping on this one first, because this, this was actually one that I saw that I've been talking internally a lot with Lamont about. Um, and it's that idea. I love the idea of open, you know, open NDR, open XDR, open cloud. Yeah, those, those types of things, we have to be able to, you know, make that almost requirement number one. In many ways, you know, we know the sum of many things is better than the sum of One, if you buy the black box, that's what you're getting is that sum of one, or maybe a sum of a few, um, and you have to, you know, build that intelligence by being open. That's really where it comes into. I'm a huge believer you'll out of, uh, out of some of them, you know, I know we've only talked about two, but right now this one is a probably ranked higher for me then principle one that we, that we talked about with challenge, everything, right? This one is, you know, this one is, is core. I think for us to be able to succeed with the future,
[00:08:54] James Christiansen: You know, I'm Jason I've bought best of breed products a lot through my career. You know, we, we very much went after with, uh, very aggressive companies like these, uh, that I was working for, you know, but today's world, you know, I have to look at best of breed platforms. I just can't afford the manpower it takes to manage all these different solutions. And the complexity it's brought to the organization, you know, just leads to human errors, leads to patches, not getting applied versions, not getting updated. So I've really had to move away and my thought process away from best of breed and started looking at best of breed platforms. Now, what can give me the best tightest integration, like you said, in your opening conversation, it can't be somebody with a lot of skew numbers, it has to be a truly integrated platform to solve the real problems.
[00:09:50] Jason Clark: So Erick, any thoughts from you on open and integrated? Why every solution we buy from this point forward, it should be more part of the ecosystem versus being the black boxes of kind of that we procured in the past.
[00:10:03] Erick Rudiak: Yeah. Great question, Jason. So like when I think about open and integrated and why it's so important, our systems are so interconnected. If there's no API to create visibility, like the complexity and interconnectedness of our systems kind of demands that signal from one defensive system, uh, be available to others so that they can orchestrate a response nearest to where the attacker is, and also so that a coherent user experience results. Um, and it becomes very, you know, both, uh, difficult for defenders to manage that. And candidly creates a drain and demands a level of complexity to weave those systems together that open an integrated, uh, is just a superior pattern for them.
[00:10:51] Jason Clark: Brilliant answer. Love it. So principle three is focused on foundational technologies that integrate with your entire security ecosystem. So I'll start with Lamont, you know, you've had the opportunity to build a Greenfield security program. What does that, you know, when, when you look at that right. What was the first stack that you built? What were the five core kind of foundational technologies that were part of this Greenfield infrastructure?
[00:11:16] Lamont Orange: So I think that's a very important question because when you talk about the transformation that security must go through you, you have to look at it. Not only from what tools are in my stack, but it's what capabilities we want and make that more aligned to the outcome. So I'd say the first capability That I wanted. It is around visibility. I had to see what was happening and order to affect the risk level of the organization and be able to put controls around that and tools that help you to understand what is happening would, would be a tool that looks at your usage of even legacy applications, as well as SaaS, IaaS, and PaaS technologies, you also have to take into consideration your identities. Many companies are struggling with identity as they have several IDPs. They have several managers of those identities, whether they are production systems or, uh, corporate systems. And what you want to do is have some sort of governance around it. So identity was one of the other areas that I focused on. And then you look at data protection. Well, we're all in it to protect our data. That is the crown jewel for the bad actor. We have to understand what valuable data we have and what data we like to protect. And then you look at where is that going? So you want to understand the data protection from the user to app to end point. So you have to have back to a comment that James Robinson made about being open with XDR NDR and whatever we put in front of. That DR capability, you have to have that understanding around the configuration of that device and even the organizations that may be using that data. And then there's one other capability that I think is very important to help organizations scale. Uh, when they're looking at a Greenfield, you need something that's going to manage your configuration automation and orchestration. And I think those are solutions that can be kept in one, one area, but they need to have the following those three capabilities in order to be effective.
[00:13:29] Jason Clark: Erick, on, on this, uh, principle around kind of foundational technologies. You know, landed in the other organizations. And now as a CTO, what would any thoughts on this one from an ecosystem standpoint around security,
[00:13:43] Erick Rudiak: There's a couple of things. So identity is one. Um, and you know, I think about that in terms of kind of the various levels of assertions that people in systems can make about who the human is at the other end of the line or who the system is that another system is working with. So that it kind of encompasses everything from multi-factor to kind of directory services, like that's absolutely vital to get right. I agree with Lamont, uh, that having data protection, having visibility into kind of data at rest and data in motion. Is another, and then, uh, it nowadays it's not particularly exciting, but the, kind of the very basics of encryption and configuration management and, you know, in thinking about configuration management, kind of incorporating both, uh, kind of config drift golden builds, you know, system hardening as well as, uh, vulnerability management, which I consider an instance of that class. Kind of pulling that all together. Those are among the first places that I have looked myself for, the kind of assurance that the basic blocking and tackling that the outrage factor of, uh, getting those wrong is managed and minimized for any organization that I’m part of.
[00:15:04] Jason Clark: Okay. So principle four only buy cloud powered new technologies. Right? So essentially everything you buy should be cloud power to cloud enabled or cloud born. You know, there's a Gartner paper. That's. The future of security is in the cloud, as we were doing this tour, there was a, a sentence said that, you know, cloud is the perfect reset for security programs, right? Because you get to kind of start fresh and do things, right. What do you, when you, so overall for all of you, what curious what you all think about this, this principle and, and why we wrote it.
[00:15:34] James Robinson: I think the principle is good. I think for us to take advantage of and, and to meet, you know, one of the things that we say internally is meet your customer, where they're at, you know, if the customer is, is in the cloud or they're moving to the cloud, right, which is even better to be where they're going to be, you have to adopt this principle. It has to be a foundational component for anything that you're looking at. ou know? And, and if it's, you know, cloud assisted, you may look at it. For instance, cloud assisted EDR. Okay, get it right. It's got to have something on the end point. It can't just all be cloud, but you know, for, for anything that's on the network stack for anything that's in the application stack server stack, um, you know, anywhere in between, you know, it definitely has to, has to carry with this principle.
[00:16:17] James Christiansen: You know, uh, Jason, this is the third major transformation I've been through it in my career and, and, um, technology and security versus movement from mainframes to client server. Then from client server to cloud enabled system. And now with business Digitas, digitalization, you know, we see these transformations and I think, you know, the further you resist them and don't recognize them the further you drop behind. So as you start thinking about cloud and cloud enablement, I talked to many CISOs every year, I mean, three or four hundred. And when we talk about what their plans are, where they see as SASE came out or are now secure service edge, And you start looking at definitions. When I start working with an organization and start looking where they're at, they're already somewhere down the path. They may be further in the maybe far, uh, ladder down, but they're, they're already on that path, which just, it just says we're the most common security folks recognize this is the pattern to go to. This is the direction. The only new investments I see are really just renewables. Cause they, they can't get moved off quick enough to the new cloud enabled, uh, technologies. But I think, you know, from a people process and technology perspective, all three it's about training our people on how to work in these cloud technologies. It's building out the processes that support those and the things, and finally implementing the technology, to enable those people and enable those process to provide the level of controls we need nowadays. But certainly the business is going there. We've seen the acceleration of that movement in the business and us as security professionals.
[00:17:59] Jason Clark: I mean in the end, isn't it, every bit as businesses going there and therefore your security needs to be where the data is and where the businesses. And also whenever you have a mobile workforce, you need to leverage the cloud to be able to secure that workforce because you can't just do it from your data center, right? Like in its simplest form, you just changing a leverage point in your scale.
[00:18:18] James Robinson: I love what James said, because when you talked about, you know, moving from, you know, from mainframe to client server, you know, we saw that major shift. If anyone's part of it, I definitely saw it and was part of it as well. And watching that happen, I could not imagine if you didn't make that shift, or if you did make that shift and you still tried to maintain, remember how hard it was to maintain in client server, those controls that you had and, and deliver those via the mainframe. It was almost impossible to do. In fact, it was impossible, which is why everyone's shifted and you saw the market change.
[00:18:49] Jason Clark: So the next one is principle five and. It potentially has more weight than many of the others. It is protect business data with security controls that follow the data everywhere. Right. So, which essentially to me is, you know, this is, this is the grand strategy of security it's for many companies or organizations why security exists. Right. It's just protecting the information. So, you know, maybe let's talk a little bit about, we named this a principle for a reason, right. Because I think we felt that people were historically not mature enough in data protection. So, Erick, what's your thoughts around kind of why we established this as a principle and in how people need to transform from a, how they look at data security or data protection?
[00:19:34] Erick Rudiak: Yeah, I think there's two elements to this one, Jason, like one way to look at it is the security industry has had a history of negotiating against itself. On controls like this of saying, oh, well, this data used to be in our, you know, in our data center, um, you know, protected by perimeter controls, but we want to move it into the cloud and, you know, the cloud just doesn't have quite the same thing, but boy, the cloud is so compelling, so we accept less. Um, and so, uh, one way to look at this principle and they're not mutually exclude. Is never accept less like don't compromise on, you know, uh, on this kind of very basic idea that no matter where your data goes, Your controls matter, um, because they certainly, uh, the, you know, the attacker doesn't look at the world that way. And so that is part of the cost of doing business. That's part of the economics of, uh, you know, of handling sensitive data. And so the obligation to the person whose data you're, uh, you're trafficking in doesn't change. If you've allowed the data to move from one environment to another. I think another way to look at this one is that it's immensely aspirational. So I think any of us who have done threat modeling, we'll look at that guiding principle and say, oh, Jason, uh, Surely, uh, surely you can't protect the data when I do this to it when I use steganography or when I use covert channels or when I, you know, when I take advantage of, you know, pick your favorite row and column out of the MITRE attack framework. Um, and I think aspirationally, it's a challenge to us to say no to say. Uh, we are going to put controls in place that kind of reaffirm our obligations as custodians, that wherever the data goes, we are going to know about it. We're going to assert our controls, that you know, that the attacker doesn't get to win by using these common patterns.
[00:21:42] Jason Clark: Yeah. It's um, it's, uh, you know, fair. If we can get the controls to follow the user and the data that is Nirvana, especially whenever we don't have to invest heavily to do it, but love. Principle six, prioritize your business and risk reward when making security strategy right. Or decisions. Right. And building your tactics, et cetera. Right. So essentially as the business constantly changed, right. So it's always a constant trade off and we need to be in tuned to the business to be able to make that decision. Right. But enable them. And I love, you know, the saying. This isn't about eliminating friction, right? It's the right amount of friction to the business. So curious, what, what, uh, each of you, James, maybe we'll start with you, uh, Christiansen on, you know, your thoughts on, on that principle.
[00:22:29] James Christiansen: Yeah. This, this one for me is an important one because more successful CISOs. They're not focused on stopping data protected. They're focused on enabling the business and they understand the role of enabling the business to find that right balance between risk and reward. Right. And can't get too far skewed on either side or you're not, you're not doing the company and the stockholder value. You've got to live up to your role, but it's about enabling the business. And when I think about this in, in terms of change and how fast things change. I really think about, you know, the seven forces that are on a security strategy and these forces are really something you should be looking at because they're constantly changing. And as they change, you should be in tune with that change and think about how has that affect my stress. Has that really make a difference in what I was planning to do versus what I should do now. And the seven forces, we put out a white paper on it recently that I would encourage you to go read, but it seems like the culture of the company, a merger and acquisition might change. The culture might change in many ways. So how does that change the way you're looking at the economy and economic forces, government forces, conflicts, things that aren't directly related, but have these impacts on your overall security strategy. And as they change, you need to be agile as an organization. You need to be able to shift quickly and shift effectively to stay up with the business, because remember where we started this it's about enabling. The business and that's what you should always keep in mind.
[00:24:16] Jason Clark: So anybody else, you know James, Erick, and Lamont to add to that the prioritization of the business risk and reward.
[00:24:23] Erick Rudiak: So when I think about what's happened in the last year and a half, you know, we all woke up on March the 13th of last year and all of our annualized loss expectancy curves were garbage. Like they, uh, they were fundamentally flawed because there had been this injection of a completely new risk and totally new risk reward needs in terms of ALE. And so when I think about where our industry was 10 years ago, um, you know, a lot of us practitioners would say, you know, don't spend a thousand bucks, you know, to protect 10. And I think what has happened since then is our counterparts in the C-suite, the boards that govern us have become much more sophisticated. And so they expect us, as security practitioners, to understand business’ risk tolerance. And to come in with a narrative that says, look as your CISO, here's how closely our loss expectancy curves match our risk tolerance. And here's what needs to, you know, what we need to do in some places we may need to invest, in others we may actually have so much control that we can afford to take a little bit more risk, um, and you know, in adjust and be business positive and support additional capabilities to improve productivity. And so we've all, kind of through a forced Sentinel evet, had to learn that skill very quickly over the last year and a half, you know, the silver lining for us as security practitioners is, um, that skill is going to really come in handy for us. As we get back in front of our boards, as we get back into, uh, into the C-suite and discuss with our peers at the table. Not why we are saying yes or no to particular controls, but how our entire control environment matches our risk tolerance. And that's, you know, uh, just a maturation of the dialogue that we engage in and it's, you know, it's a really exciting one. It gives us a seat at the table.
[00:26:29] Jason Clark: Yeah, I think that it is, we look at it. We have to think about it again. It's just, we always say this, but as business leaders and, and how is this, what this activity, the business is trying to do, going to, for companies focused on, you know, acquiring, retaining profitable customers, right? Which is any way that's in the business of making money. And how are activities, the business doing, going to accelerate that right. And to what degree, what, how much do I doing need to protect them? Or can I let them go and then apply protections and, and just, just truly understanding the things that can move the needle for the business. And I mean, I, I personally deal with it every single day. And looking at marketing stuff and looking at security stuff. Lamont and I are in the conversations daily, right? Or about, about what's, uh, wanting to open up something that we want to do versus the balance of security of it. Right. And, and the marketing team wants to, you know, always wants to, wants to push forward, but we want to make sure that partner we're signing up to access our Salesforce information it's secure. Right. And it's all about the outcomes. And then how long do we have to. To apply the security controls. So I think it's, uh, it's not something that every security team's built with today, they think of things as well. There needs to be an exception. Who's going to sign off on the risk versus rationalizing it. Like you just said, Erick. So principle seven is build threat models and use them in every architecture decision you make. So Erick, you know, when you first heard James Robinson talk about threat models. At one point, I think you kind of came to me and said, uh, Jason Knight, I want to hire James Robinson away from you.
[00:28:08] Erick Rudiak: That sounds like me. Like I would have brazenly just said none for you all for me. That's totally on brand,
[00:28:16] Jason Clark: But we'd love your thoughts on principle seven here.
[00:28:21] Erick Rudiak:No, I mean, I think, uh, boy, it sure is hard to defend against something that you've never seen or thought about. And so like, everybody likes to use military analogies for this, but like I think about, so I've got a kid that loves to go to the neighborhood tennis courts with me and, you know, hit the ball around, um, in boy, uh, the first time that I threw a slice backhand at that kid, it was a predictably hilarious. Like they'd only ever seen the top spin shot and they just kind of swung and missed as soon as the ball landed and skidded away. And so I think that's, you know, that, that practice for our defenders and our defenders are everyone. Right? It's our infrastructure folks. It's our cloud, uh, engineering. It's our, uh, software engineers and everybody in between it. So user experience folks, it's our, you know, it's our database and middleware folks. They have to have seen both the top spin and the back spin in order to be able to effectively do that. And so that's, you know, that's why red teaming and attack simulation are such a vital part of any world-class, uh, information protection organization is because that practice is just so important.
[00:29:34] Jason Clark: Principal eight expand security operations automation. Right? So ultimately just a hyper-focus on automating your operations. So Lamont, can you maybe talk a little bit to why this principle song.
[00:29:46] Lamont Orange: I think it's a very important principle given that I think I spoke earlier about the increased velocity of attacks that we see. And I think it was also mentioned about some of the complexities that we have in our organization. So when you think of all of that, and you think of our, our teams, our skill, how skilled our teams are. And just the tooling resources that we have, we have to keep up at the speed of our attacker. And in some ways. We have to go and propel ourselves further and faster than the speed of our attacker is a better way to say it. And I think the way to do that is through automation. We have spent lots of time, I think, in the security industry, working with the security automation, tools and resources, formerly known as SOAR. We've spent some time with, with, uh, orchestration tools and confusing them as SOAR tools. And I think we, we really just need to take a step back and say automation is something that we should focus on when we're looking for scale and flexibility. And that will allow the velocity to be reduced to signal, to noise ratio, to be reduced. And then we further can react to these alerts that come through. Some of these things come in the form of having some of the foundational components built such as runbooks. And understanding how you are to execute a standard process throughout your SOC. That's something that you can automate from a maturity standpoint, but you can orchestrate a response in the very beginning, understanding how you triage. Triage is something that can be orchestrated, and then you can automate the response and control. When you talk about also automating and using orchestration within your SOC, you're also updating your incident response and management procedures. The incident management practices that we've used in the past don't necessarily scale very well to the attack, the type of threats that we have, the type of interaction that we have, have to have what I workforce, our suppliers and vendors. We've extended our attack surface, which I know we'll talk about in a different principle, but the extension of that attack surface is really something that we have to look at when we're thinking about how automation helps us again, achieve that scale and flexibility. I think there's another piece of this that we can't always run through our teams and say, well, it's contained into security. As long as security says, it's good, then we're fine. We also have to communicate what we're doing to our team members so that once they understand why we do some of the things we do, they will also be a willing person. And that's part of that transparency that I, that I believe that's part of automating and building out that, that SOC. And that's why it becomes the heartbeat of your security and response programs.
[00:32:54] Jason Clark: Yeah. It's funny when you look at these principles, right? They're all so interconnected with each other, right. And dependent on each other to be really, really good. Before, before I move on to principle nine, anybody want to add anything on security operations that Lamont.
[00:33:11] James Robinson: I have one that, uh, it's more just a question to it or everyone. So one of the things I've been thinking about more and more, and I look at some of my, uh, builders, developers, engineer, software engineer, brethren, and I've worked with every game and the idea of runbooks and playbooks and, and so on and so forth, you know, outside of architecture and design, you know, or, or one of those things, that's kind of, kind of in the past, in some cases, and Iwonder if, where do you stand as far as automation, are you still requiring and having your team build, build out the run books, playbooks, and those, those different things, and that's what governs and sets in place, the automation for scale, or you taking a different approach?
[00:33:52] Lamont Orange: That's an interesting debate. Honestly, I, I think very, very few programs have gone to automation and trusty automate. I think going back to what I said about orchestration orchestration will be the execution of the tasks that need to happen. I think the runbooks and I'm using that term very loosely. It may be a standard process that you're using to respond to a certain type of incident. Or a certain type of question of the security team, a certain requirement that's asked within the development or with any of the, your, your teams that you would issue requirements to if they are handling certain types of data, or if they have certain type of system interactions, I think you can orchestrate those responses. We have to mature to the automation piece because I'm not sure every program trusts the automated action yet. That's been the challenge.
[00:34:53] Erick Rudiak: I'll give you actually a perspective from software engineering on this one. When I think about the performance characteristics of a software program, right. There's kind of a, you know, in comp, comp sci, we can have all learned about, O , notation, right. Or O of N notation. And so I had a great conversation with our CISO recently and she was asking. To walk through some of our speeds and feeds like how many GitHub repositories do we have? How many commits do we do per day? You know, how many, you know, how many times do we run our pipelines per day? And it was a great conversation about whether we were able to scale our security at O of N or at O of log N. And this is where automation is so absolutely vital is, you know, it actually speaks to the talent challenge and some of the diversity challenges in information security and automation is the best way for us to go. To scaling our controls from an O of N to an O of log N or even something smaller. And so like the ability to kind of remove the human element or to channel the human elements towards solving more complex, more interesting problems is just so vital. Like, I don't know how, uh, you know, how an enterprise can keep up with the scale of demand. Both on the attacker side with new techniques and kind of evolving malware, ransomware, uh, attack techniques, et cetera, as well as, uh, just the ability of an organization nowadays to scale its supply of attack surface with easily provisioned cloud services, et cetera, like automation is the only way. And in the book, we kind of talk about this idea of back in the day for some of us where we actually knew our servers by name. Right. Uh, they were treated like pets. They were beloved. They were expected to have a very long lifespan versus this idea of servers today being like Lego bricks, mass produced and with either intentionally or not extremely short lifespans. And there just, isn't a really good way that I've been able to come up with the scale of security organization to meet contemporary needs. That don't feature automations, a core principle
[00:37:10] Jason Clark: I love the analogy, Erick. And, uh, that's a great section on the book that everybody should, uh, should definitely read. So principle nine and I'll start with, uh, James Christiania and then go to Erick on this because I've had the best kind of risk conversations with, with the two of you. But it's principle nine is demand continuous visibility and risk assessment and every security control, essentially, we want real time. Risk assessment and controls versus kind of these one time assessments, right, of a once a year assessments of risk. So James starting with you.
[00:37:43] James Christiansen: Yeah. Thanks. Um, you know, this is always a hot topic for me and you know, I'm going to take this, uh, just a couple directions, but I'll, I'll be brief here. You know, the, the idea of continuous, visibility. Yeah. The first principle and risk is you can't manage risks that you don't know about, so you absolutely need to get that risk and or that visibility. And what we've seen is it's a shift is we went from, you know, client server to cloud a cloud, then to this, this new world, we've lost that visibility. We lost those capabilities that we had, you know, in our prior days. And, and we need to get those back. Visibility is absolutely essential, you know, and the other part of that is continuous. And we often hear the word zero trust, but, uh, it's a term I'm not really a fan of mainly because, you know, with executive teams, it brings up the wrong connotation of Oh you're the security guy. You don't trust anybody. And there was a, you know, security people, they think of, you know, tokens. I took care of it. Well, I, I prefer to think about it as continuous adaptive trust. Or a continually adapting security program that automatically is looking at the risks and being able to measure the different telemetry of risk and adjusting the reaction to those risks. You know, why do we need the same level of controls? If, if someone's going to go out to ESPN and, and check this their, um, security or their football scores, as it would be, if they're going to go look. You know, the materials for the board pre-release, you know, obviously very, very different risks levels. A lot of telemetry comes in that device, the application, location of the individual, that traffic, that all can be measured now. And that's, that's the key thing for the listeners. There is the capability. To be able to do this now and make these adaptive real-time decisions on the risk level, that route of controls and be able to adapt those controls. So I think this is just a really exciting time to be able to, to look at these risks and be able to adapt as we go forward. Yeah. There's a whole nother conversation about third-party risk and then fourth-party risks that, well, we'll just have to save for another day, but another great subject with that. Turn it over back to you, Jason,
[00:39:59] Erick Rudiak: I'm trying to find a way to argue against constant visibility. And I can't find one, um, you know, uh, like would I rather have more information or less, would I rather catch attacks and progress sooner or slower? Um, would I have rather have like long dwell time or short dwell time? Yeah. Uh, I would much rather be winning. And so, you know, I do think about this idea of continuous visibility, uh, can, it takes me all the way back to Peter Sandman and crisis communications. Um, and Peter, Sandman’s kind of a non-Orthodox definition of risk being the sum of hazard and outrage. And so the outrage factor of like, not knowing. Of us in this modern age with the ability to monitor something constantly and not in choosing, not to have not knowing that a control fail, not knowing that a configuration changed, not knowing that, you know, a bad actor had entered our systems. Like the outrage factor on that is just simply, um, it's untenable
[00:41:09] Jason Clark: So last, uh, last principle, we know what these are. These are, again, the 10 that we felt were the most important that kind of stretch people foundationally for the future. We could probably, you know, we had a number of ones that we, we started with and that we were had 20 to begin with and we got it down to 10, but so the, the 10th one is reduce attack surface using zero trust principles.
[00:41:31] Erick Rudiak: ] I just heard that we don't like zero trust. We're going to have to change it.
[00:41:36] Jason Clark: I think the industry is confused around zero trust. Aren't they? Um, you know, what, what is zero trust?
[00:41:43] Erick Rudiak: To me, the, the thing, you know, the, the thing with zero trust is that trust kind of decays over time. And so like, when I think about, uh, like the most classic example of that for me is the idle screen timeout, like classic control it's part of PCI. It used to be part of NIST as part of, you know, pretty much every security framework for decades, where there was an approximation made that said, oh, well, if somebody who knew Jason's password. Entered it into Jason's terminal and eventually Jason's PC or laptop and eventually Jason's phone. Then there's an assumption made that for some period of time, it's probably still Jasonn. Um, and, uh, like it kind of defies logic, uh, especially when we think about, you know, human factors and design and the way that people actually work that, you know, 14.9 minutes after that password was entered, that we should have the same amount of trust in input from that terminal, from that PC, from that phone, as we did the moment that Jason entered his password. And so like when I think about zero trust and why. To me it's because it recognizes this falsehood that the security industry tolerated for years, because the technology was too difficult because it was too expensive and we made this compromise. We said, yep. We trust that term. For up to 15 minutes and we would assign the same level of trust to the input, the packets that, you know, the, that, that device generated at the 14 point ninth minute as we did the first. Um, and so it's time we move on.
[00:43:23] Jason Clark: You know the debate in zero trust is that, you know, obviously there are vendors, that'll say, oh, this is all about it. Right, or it's all about end point or I think it, it's not a binary thing it's not on or off. Right. That there's people that make the argument that trust is on or off. And I view it as you can come into my house through the front door and I let you in, but doesn't mean you can go to every room. Doesn't mean you can get into my safe.
[00:43:44] Erick Rudiak: Ooh, we're going to have to talk about the last time I came to your house, Jason.
[00:43:49] Jason Clark: And, you know, just the based on your behavior, right? Like you said, how long you've been there and that instance, right? The longer you here, maybe I trust you more because I've watched your behavior. Right. So I could argue the flip side of, of maybe all from an authentication standpoint, but the longer you're here, the more I see your behavior, the more I hang out with you. The more I let you go to other rooms. I guess what I'm trying to say is to me there's a trust of a device. Do I trust your device and how much? And at that moment in time, kind of like that real-time risk assessment. Do I trust the network you're coming from the network Iran. Do I trust you as a person this moment in time, based on your behavior, do I trust the application you're even going to right? Cause it's not just you, it's the app, your act you're interacting with and is it potentially compromised? The data that you're trying to, to upload or download what's the impact of that? Right. And to me, there's a, there's kind of this real-time risk based conditional control decision to meet us. Like Nirvana of zero trust in my mind is I'm either going to give you zero. True. I'm going to give you zero access or I'm going to trust you completely. Let's call that zero level five and then like there's 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, right. To me, three in the middle is I'm giving you access to the data, but it's view edit online only, not. Right. One might be multiple extra hops of you writing a paragraph of why you need this data and that it's an emergency or whatever it may be. So I, I kind of view this as, as a zero trust as this place that we need to get to that is driving to zero trust to reduce the attack surface, but ultimately having people by behavior gain more trust as needed. So we don't put friction on the busy. But Lamont. I know I'm curious, like we kind of talked about zero trust a lot here, but the first part of this principle was reducing the attack surface using zero trust. Right. So, you know, as you're, as you're defending your organization, right? Every single day, how you driving this principle, are we reducing attacks?
[00:45:46] Lamont Orange: I think the first place that we should look at the start is around visible and analytics, visibility. I'm sorry, analytics, because if you can't see it, man is hard to, to apply in and control or protected and, and that'll be visibility to your user visibility to your infrastructure, to your data. And then you can start to bridge those use cases as to what is the most important thing to the organization at that time. I like the levels and how you described that. But we also have to understand what's the most important asset and we, we can come and agree and say that it’s data, but which data, which set a data and you look at those controls through that visibility and analytics capability to apply those controls to that day.
[00:46:32] Jason Clark: I think we've absolutely covered that 10 principles as well. So thank you for listening to the Security Visionaries and be on the lookout for new episodes dropping every week with security professionals from across the industry. So thank you, Erick Lamont and James for the time. And, uh, it’s been fun
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