Women in Security: Women to Watch

Lillian Ablon,
information scientist, RAND

Lillian Ablon does not sit still for very long. While holding down her full-time job as an information scientist at the non-profit RAND Corporation, she finds time to pen numerous articles on cybersecurity, testify before Congress and speak at Black Hat not to mention being a Def Con “Uber” Black Badge recipient. At RAND she conducts technical and policy research on topics ranging from cybersecurity, computer networks and emerging technologies to privacy and security in the digital age, digital exhaust, and the human element. Ablong recently took a new position as a senior security technical program manager at Amazon. – Doug Olenick

Lodrina Cherne,
security analyst, Cybereason

A national champion powerlifter, Cybereason Security Analyst Lodrina Cherne is a powerhouse in the digital forensics space as well. Case in point: one of her investigations led to the acquittal of 236 foreign military officers who were imprisoned in Turkey for allegedly orchestrating an attempted coup. Cherne helped prove that the computer files submitted as evidence against them were forged. Her 15-year career includes a stint as computer forensics examiner for Arsenal Consulting, where she conducted host-based analyses of Windows, macOS, Android and iOS systems in cases concerning intellectual property theft, employment disputes and evidence tampering. In addition to her daily investigative work at Cybereason, Cherne has led an effort to educate her company’s sales team on the value and responsibilities of Security Operations Centers (SOCs). She’s also an instructor for the SANS Institute’s FOR500: Windows Forensic Analysis Program, helping advance students’ understanding of Digital Forensics and Incident Response.  – Bradley Barth 

Leigh-Anne Galloway,
cybersecurity resilience lead, Positive Technologies

As cybersecurity resilience lead at Positive Technologies, Leigh-Anne Galloway advises organizations on how to secure their applications, devices and infrastructure against threats. Her work has especially paid off in the payments sector, as she helps protect financial services providers from modern-day threats. At the Black Hat conference last year, Galloway demonstrated attacks against mobile POS devices that would allow unscrupulous merchants to charge fraudulent transactions and alter the amount charged, and at OWASP London 2018 she showed how to hack an ATM. Galloway began her career leading investigations into payment card breaches, eventually taking on lead analyst roles at Silver Tail Systems and vArmour. Among her career highlights is her April 2017 discovery of a MySpace vulnerability that could be exploited to perform unauthorized log-ins. – Bradley Barth

Laura Louthan,
founder, Angel Cybersecurity

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) often don’t have the resources they need to grow mature cybersecurity programs. Laura Louthan, the self-described “Mary Poppins of security programs,” set out to change that two years, when she started her own cybersecurity consulting firm. Louthan enters the picture, she says, when companies have little or nothing established and “flies away” when they’re ready to hire full-time security personnel. She also brings expertise and a “steel hand in a velvet glove” to larger companies grappling with compliance issues. As a member of the Oakland, Calif.-based Stride Center’s board of directors, the entrepreneur advocates for training up underserved communities in security and technology. – Teri Robinson

Lysa Myers,
security researcher, ESET

Lysa Myers is the perfect example of how firms can fill the cybersecurity talent gap by hiring out-of-the-box candidates. Originally a florist with no college degree or cyber background, Myers was hired as a receptionist at McAfee in 1999 before earning a spot in the company’s virus research group. Twenty years later, she’s now a researcher at ESET and a passionate advocate for diversity in cybersecurity. Her notable work includes analyses of early Nintendo DS and PlayStation Portable malware and early Mac OS X malware, as well as her contributions to third-party testing of security products. Myers currently is vice chair of the Computing Technology Industry Association’s IT Security Community Executive Council, and also frequently works with the non-profit organization’s Advancing Women in Technology Executive Council. – Bradley Barth

Noushin Shabab,
senior security researcher, global research and analysis team (GReAT), Kaspersky

Noushin Shabab’s interest in cybersecurity began at a young age, in middle school, when she began to learn programming. Working from Australia, Shabab works tirelessly to encourage other women to follow her path into cybersecurity. This includes being active in Women in Cyber Mentoring (WICME) and being an active member of the Australian Women in Security Network (AWSN), which has the mission to support and inspire women in the Australian security industry. Her role with AWSN included being the first mentor to provide technical workshops and mentorship for the AWSN female cadets program that aims to bridge the skill gap between universities and the security industry. – Doug Olenick

Ellison Anne Williams,
CEO, Enveil

Ellison Anne Williams is the chief executive officer of Enveil and has more than a decade of experience spearheading avant-garde efforts in the areas of large-scale analytics, information security and privacy, computer network exploitation, and network modeling at the National Security Agency and the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory. In addition to her leadership experience, she is accomplished in the fields of distributed computing and algorithms, cryptographic applications, graph theory, combinatorics, machine learning, and data mining and holds a Ph.D. in Mathematics (algebraic combinatorics), a M.S. in Mathematics (set theoretic topology), and a M.S. in Computer Science (machine learning).  – Robert Abel

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