EC-Council Foundation’s 2016 Global CISO Forum in Atlanta, GA September 16-17 brought together some of the most influential leaders in information security for two days of keynotes, panels, and interactive discussions. Participants came from all over the United States, South Africa, United Kingdom, Ireland, Singapore, and Ecuador – making the event truly global.

Before the official kick-off the Global CISO Forum, the CISOs and the attendees of EC-Council Foundation’s other conference, Hacker Halted, were brought together for the “Privacy vs. Security Debate” to hear Kurt Opshaul from the EFF, Amar Singh, former CISO of News International, Jack Daniel, security researcher at Tenable Network Security; and retired FBI Special Agent Steve Bongart, discuss where the line should be drawn between ensuring security and respecting privacy. The debate was moderated by Mitzi Hill, Partner at Taylor English Duma LLP with a long history in cyber security.

After the kick-off of the Global CISO Forum, the first day was dedicated to keynotes and began with a presentation by the former CISO of RSA and current President of White Ops, Eddie Schwartz. Later in the day, the winner of the InfoSec Tech & Exec Awards Most Improved Security Program of the Year and CSO of Lennar, Inc., Juan Gomez-Sanchez, took the stage to deliver a keynote about next gen security programs. Marten Mikos, HackerOne’s CEO, gave a very interesting talk about bug bounty programs and how they should be part of every security program. Mikos’ talk in particular drew a lot of audience interaction as the crowd debated the idea of allowing hackers into their systems as part of a security program.

Day two of the Global CISO Forum showcased a talk about the applicability and future of the PCI standard by Elavon’s CISO, Mark Gelhardt. Next was a rousing panel on ransomware which created a lot of crowd involvement and debate about how best to prepare for and defend against this insidious threat.

Next, Alejandro Villegas, Head of Security and Trust for Amazon, talked about how CISOs should be doing a better job of working with their legal departments and how a stronger partnership between the two would create better security. The event was capped off by a crowd discussion led by Chuck McGann, former CISO of the US Postal Service and current Chief Cyber Strategist at Salient. The group conversation dealt with the issues that “keep CISOs up at night” and touched on issues such as staffing challenges, budget constraints, and creating buy-in from other executives.

The CISOs were treated to a cocktail reception hosted by Simeio Solutions where they were able to network – one of the most valued parts of the Forum.

Some attendee feedback included:

“Conference was amazing and breathed the IS spirit in all participants. Coordination was remarkable and the experience unique. Very motivating.”

“Interesting topics discussed considering current situations, threats, and legal issues.”

“Great! Very engaging and relevant!”

“Great panel discussions”

Next year’s Global CISO Forum will be October 9 – 10, 2017 and registration will be open soon. As usual, the event will only accept registrations from EC-Council Certified CISOs and Director-level or above information security practitioners.

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