Why did you get into IT security?
I followed in my father's footsteps. He worked in IT security for a decade before I started.
How do you describe your job to average people?
I work in computer security, and we keep an eye on the data that is used to build the company's products. We have to protect it so that phones and computers keep getting better and in the process make people's lives better.
What was one of your biggest challenges?
The biggest career challenge I faced is turning around the convention in my field that you were either technical security or security management. I've been successful at both, and we need more people who can wear both hats. I've also found valuable perspective in seeing both the technical and management sides of an issue.
What keeps you up at night?
I worry that information security organizations are not changing fast enough in a changing world. So many have been “fighting fires” for so long they may have not learned new “fire prevention” techniques along the way. It takes time and resources to be proactive, which are always in short supply.
Of what are you most proud?
I worked at a company which supported my efforts to develop a new approach to securing data and then supported my desire to release it as free software to help the rest of the world with the same task. I believe there is a lot of benefit in an IT department sharing a success with other IT departments worldwide.
For what would you use a magic IT security wand?
I would want to equip all information security incident responders with the best data tools to quickly and efficiently handle incidents. I know there are people who are kept away from their families doing this work, and I want to get them home sooner.