A panel debate at (ISC)2’s EMEA Security Congress in London called on the infosec industry to redouble its efforts to emphasize the importance of security matters to the public and enterprises.
Debating under the header ‘Key Challenges Today’, the panel was chaired by (ISC)2 EMEA head John Colley and featured MP David Blunkett, CERN head of computer security Dr Stefan Lüders, and Ray Stanton, executive VP of professional services at BT.
“The most important thing is a change of culture,” argued Dr Lüders, suggesting that the biggest challenge facing the industry is helping the wider public to develop an ingrained security awareness. Getting people to think automatically about security whenever they receive an email containing links or attachments, Dr Lüders suggested, is the first step: “Once people start asking questions you get the ball rolling.”
In his opening keynote prior to the debate, Blunkett also highlighted the importance of security education, commenting that “Unless we’re in schools and colleges and getting the point across about the risk for pupils we’re failing badly.”
Reflecting on his time as Secretary of State for Education, he lamented not investing more in training for teachers, many of whom were being asked to teach information technology classes without prior grounding in the subject.
“You’re only as good as the person passing on the knowledge,” he remarked. Broadening this point out to apply to businesses, too, he suggested that, “We as an industry need to find ways to attract people who have recently been on the frontline,” and that there needs to be more ability for knowledgeable people “to move from academia to business more readily.” Sharing skills, Blunkett summarized, is going to be a key development in strengthening businesses’ natural resilience to cyber threats.
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