23.03.2016

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After announcing our first two speakers for next month’s #HybridIT2016 event, we are delighted to announce our third vendor speaker. This time it’s no other than Terry Greer-King, Director of Cyber Security at Cisco. Cisilion’s Chief Technology Officer Alex Hooper sat down with Terry to find out how companies can and should secure the Hybrid Environment. Check out below what they discussed.

What are the key trends in security in HybridIT? 

There’s some major transformation taking place in the security environment. To understand where we are, everyone is being breached. There are two types of companies in the world: those that have been breached, and those who don’t know that they have been breached.

  1. We need to recognise when we have been breached
  2. Need to understand that the nature of IT is changing
  3. Need to understand the ultimate change: drive to digitisation – the next wave of the internet

What are the key challenges when moving to the hybrid environment? 

The key are is visibility. If we understand the risk of being breached, we want to understand when we’ve been breached. So the meantime to detect a breach is so important, particularly in a hybrid environment.

The meantime to detect a breach across industries is on average around 100-200 days. At Cisco, across all of Cisco’s network, across all of Cisco’s customers, we go reporting down to 48 hours. It didn’t feel that good, but it was a lot better than 100 days. Our most recent report has got it down to 17,5 hours, so we are relentlessly trying to get this figure down.

Linked with all that, the other big issue is visibility. Specifically the issue of Shadow IT where we have all these cloud services. So visibility, and to particularly understand where we’ve been breached.

How can Cisco and Cisilion help our customers who are interested in moving to the hybrid environment? 

It’s very key to understand where we are at. So in a hybrid world, what clouds are we connected to. What we need to get is visibility of what is going on. With Cisilion, we can go into an organisation, deploy appliances, understand what is taking place, understand if that account is being breached, report back on clouds the account is connected to, open DNS activity etc. In other words, we can understand where we are starting from. That’s a great service we can offer customers.

Moving on from there, we really need to start connecting up the organisation. Typically, organisations have 50+ different vendors for security installed in their environment. This is a crazy situation, because their own security operations are trying to manage those, and manage firewall policy. It’s difficult and we can’t even patch our security appliances, let alone our operating systems. So this struggle with managing the disparate number of vendors is not an ideal place to be.

So this matching of a security policy with a business policy need a unified security architecture. Working with Cisilion I know we can work on a roadmap, we can understand where someone is at the moment, understand where the threats are, we can relay that back to our business strategy and then work out what the appropriate strategy is to unify that architecture. And that’s just a great place to be.

How do you see security evolving in the hybrid environment? 

Large enterprises have typically invested quite a lot in security architecture, to stop bad stuff form happening. Typically in silos (of vendors and technology) and we see that being transformed a lot. SO breaking down those silos, we are getting unified architecture, we’re running analytics across the private network and reporting. As we start to understand the challenges of Shadow IT in a hybrid environment, we start to extend that visibility and analytics to put people in control of their security strategies. It’s a major difference.

Second area of the marketplace is the organisations who don’t have quite the same matter of resources to invest in protective terms. There is a big drive there, more leaning to cloud consumption models around security. I see a lot of cloud provision around securing people’s environments. Coupled with that we’re starting to see a lot of drive from large organisations through the supply chain. One of the often asked questions from a small enterprise is:  Why is this going to affect me? The answer to that is: The supply chain. The bad guys go after the smaller organisations, maybe with less security. They breach that organisation and breach that to penetrate a larger organisation.

So we are going to see drive towards supply chain, drive towards security essentials (we are already seeing that from public sector). It’s a testament that small organisations should be getting more secure. We are seeing a lot of changes around this area, and I’m expecting to see a lot of drive, especially around cloud security.

Interested to hear more from Terry on security in the Hybrid Enterprise? Join Cisilion for our free #HybridIT2016 event on 22nd April at the London Fields Brewery. An event not to be missed – secure your free place here:http://events.cisilion.com/hybrid/#register