June 9, 2013 By Marc van Zadelhoff 2 min read

So with security challenges being greater than ever in today’s digital world, the burden to protect the intellectual property and the data that flows throughout the organization has extended beyond the sole responsibility of the CISO.  And this has really come up as a key topic with our customers: how do we explain the current state of security, and what to do about it, to the C-Suite?!

Together with the IBM Institute for Business value and Global Service’s security team, we recently published a paper (Managing Threats in the Digital Age) that shares our thoughts on how the entire C-suite has to take a role in protecting the organization – a sort of balanced approach – that gets everyone thinking about security, risk and compliance.

In summary, security issues require the attention of the entire C-suite of executives because of the dependencies that exist between the silos – especially when back things happen.  For example, as CHROs expand the workforce with temporary contractors,  they need to be concerned about access control to sensitive customer data or intellectual property; CFOs need to be concerned about meeting regulatory guidelines to avoid stiff penalties for non-compliance and and CMOs need to worry about brand image when external attacks occur to the network and news of the breach hits the media.

Also mentioned in the “Managing Threats…” white paper, we give our perspective on what we think the next major step in security controls, processes and technology will be. It looks at the connected system of people, infrastructure, applications and data and how we can use analytics to correlate events and insights across all these domains to make security a more manageable task.  It takes some things that IBM is very good at, like analytics, and uses that technology to more effectively find that ever illusive needle in the haystack.  Watch this space for more exciting news in the future about security analytics.

So, what are your thoughts?  Are C-level executives starting to share the security responsibility beyond just the CIO and CISO?

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