Structuring the Chief Information Security Officer Organization
December 2015 • Podcast
Presenter Nader Mehravari, Julia H. Allen Interviewer Lisa R. Young
In this podcast, Nader Mehravari and Julia Allen, members of the CERT Cyber Risk Management team, discuss an effective approach for defining a CISO team structure and functions for large, diverse organizations.
Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) are increasingly finding that the tried-and-true, traditional information security strategies and functions are no longer adequate when dealing with today’s increasingly expanding and dynamic cyber risk environment. Many opinions and publications express a wide range of functions that a CISO organization should be responsible for governing, managing, and performing. How does a CISO make sense of these functions and select the ones that are most applicable for their business mission, vision, and objectives?
In this podcast, Nader Mehravari and Julia Allen, members of the CERT Cyber Risk Management team, discuss an effective approach for defining a CISO team structure and functions for large, diverse organizations based on inputs from CISOs, policies, frameworks, maturity models, standards, codes of practice, and lessons learned from major cybersecurity incidents.
About the Speaker
Dr. Nader Mehravari is with the CERT® Program at the Software Engineering Institute (SEI), a unit of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA. His current areas of interest and research include operational resilience, protection and sustainment of critical infrastructure, preparedness planning, and associated risk management principles and practices. Nader was with Lockheed Martin from 1992 through 2011. In his most recent assignment, he was the Director for Business Resiliency. In this capacity, he led and oversaw all preparedness planning and associated governance and compliance activities. He was responsible for building and leading Lockheed Martin's resiliency program where he successfully implemented a modern, integrated, risk management based approach to disaster recovery, business continuity, pandemic planning, crisis management, emergency management, and workforce continuity for all of Lockheed Martin. Prior to Lockheed Martin, Nader was a distinguished member of the technical staff at AT&T Bell Laboratories, where he was involved with the design, development, and performance analysis of new telecommunications systems. Nader received his MS and PhD in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University and his BS in Electrical Engineering from George Washington University. He is currently an Adjunct Professor at Departments of Electrical and Computer Engineering of Cornell University and Syracuse University. He also currently serves as the chair of the Advisory Council for Cornell University's School of Electrical and Computer Engineering.
Julia Allen is a principal researcher within the CERT® Division at the Software Engineering Institute (SEI), a unit of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA. Allen’s areas of interest include operational resilience, security governance, and measurement and analysis. Prior to this technical assignment, Allen served as acting director of the SEI for an interim period of six months as well as deputy director/chief operating officer for three years. Her degrees include a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science (University of Michigan) and a Master of Science degree in Electrical Engineering (University of Southern California). Allen is the author of The CERT Guide to System and Network Security Practices (Addison-Wesley 2001) and moderator for the CERT Podcast Series: Security for Business Leaders. She is a co-author of Software Security Engineering: A Guide for Project Managers (Addison-Wesley 2008) and CERT Resilience Management Model (RMM): A Maturity Model for Managing Operational Resilience (Addison-Wesley 2010).
Lisa Young, Senior Member of the Technical Staff at the Software Engineering Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, has 20+ years of experience in the information technology and telecommunications industry. She holds the designation of Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA), Certified Information Security Manager (CISM), Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), and is experienced in IT governance, information audit and security, and risk management. Ms. Young teaches the Operationally Critical Threat, Asset, and Vulnerability Evaluation (OCTAVE®) risk-based security assessment methodology at the Software Engineering Institute. Her current line of research provides guidelines for improving the way organizations manage the processes of security, IT Operations, business continuity, compliance, and audit to support the organization's mission and critical success factors.