The first decade of the new millennium has been an amazing journey in the world of information security. In 2000, most of us were breathing a collective sigh of relief that, for the most part, our Y2K fears did not come to fruition, and we could return to our normal day-to-day responsibilities. Who knew then that the information security landscape would change so dramatically?
We learned a new term, “personally identifiable information (PII),” and the laws that govern it. It is incredible that it used to be normal operating procedure to have customers include a Social Security number on a check, or that companies wouldn't think twice to use it as a database primary key. Today, PII is treated almost as radioactive material – to be removed where possible, but otherwise protected at great cost to prevent damage to customers and employees.
In addition to the changing threat landscape, there is an alphabet soup of standards and regulations that were created and needed to be addressed depending on industry and business type. Innovative technologies, such as social media, have been game-changers in the way that we interact with each other, and cloud computing is changing the way we do business.
Through it all, the dedication, innovation and creativity of the information security world continues to provide brilliant new ideas to combat threats, foster innovation and make our information safer. I am proud to be a member of this industry and delighted SC Magazine highlights these innovations throughout the year and then coordinates an awards ceremony where these talented companies and individuals are rewarded with recognition for their hard work and dedication. This next decade will certainly bring new challenges, and I am confident that the people in our industry will meet them. Congratulations to everyone and thank you for your outstanding efforts.
– Stacey Halota is vice president, information security and privacy at The Washington Post Co. She was SC Magazine's CSO of the Year in 2009.