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October - 2014 - issue > CXO View Point
Balance between the Tactics of Today and the Planning for Tomorrow
Manish Gupta
SVP-Products-FireEye, Inc
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
Headquartered in Milpitas, CA, FireEye Inc, is a provider of products and services for detecting, preventing, and resolving advanced cybersecurity threats. The company has a market cap of $4.68 billion

The security industry has been going through a number of compelling changes. These changes have been the fruit of the constant struggle that people have been indulging in over the years. Whether in devising new strategies and tactics, in trying and building a better safer system around themselves or in dealing with relative challenges in terms of adaptation to evolve, it has been parallel ride with adversaries.

Recalling past decades, if one was to detect any threat on a device even after the first proportion of machines being infected, that was not such a bad scenario. The instamatic detection also meant that one could also shield the rest of the lot. But over the last few years with the internet becoming ubiquitous and with massive compute power on hands, the situation has led to information available at unimaginable grounds. For example, in countries like China people have gained more access to information through social media sites like facebook and LinkedIn as compared to an average person based in the US. This progress in technology has also been a prick in the eye scenario especially while information getting more transparent. This scenario has paved way for the attackers enabling them to create custom attacks in an organized way. With attackers having developed sophisticated tools and techniques, traditional security technologies which detected these attacks over time and created signatures have now become obsolete. The situation has now turned dogmatic with prior knowledge and information now becoming unworthy.

The question about Technology being good or bad, should rather lead us to a thought provoking aspect as to how do we use it. One of the prominent issues propping up in the world of security is to provide instantaneous information sharing to the customers spread across the geography. Cloud technology allows us to disseminate any information about the harmful elements to the nook and corner of the world and cloud helps us to do it very quickly and in a cost effective way. In addition, cloud has massive amount of data available, where companies for instance, Amazon, provides us with the luxury to get as many data as possible to have it analyzed, and with Big data techniques under rapid usage to analyze millions of objects, files and attachments that pose potential threats. Moreover, cloud techniques have become the preferred platforms upfront to perform these analysis.

Challenges to Tackle

In general, going High-tech is all about grabbing the massive information spread across various fields of IT with a dialectical perspective to enhance the information and narrow down on objective standpoints. In my perspective, the prime challenge has been in building and managing teams. A major factor of your success rate also depends on the quality of bench strength that you exhibit, inculcating great work culture and values will always keep the team motivated and helps achieve that edge over others. In addition to these, being a good leader helps in attracting more talent and also helps empower and motivate teams. Furthermore, the challenge occurs in spinning out company strategies which are sometimes devised as a balancing act involving a constant struggle. In making money today or tomorrow, the pressure is always on. An answer can come out of a good sound leadership combined with integrity, commitment and humility which will complete the pointing compass. Under these circumstances, we need to balance between the tactics of today and the planning for tomorrow.

Innovation is the Key

Innovation should be between all the people in the company who are striving to innovate. Moreover, innovation provides people their space and time to think out of the box which is a key for leadership. Though innovation is disruptive, to the extent that the bad guys have more ways to exploit in ways that goes on beyond ones thinking has been staggering. The Google glass with its ability to encrypt any code, take a picture of a credit card or an ATM machine with you typing a password record it and upload a video over is scary. In regard to this, the security is interwoven in everything that we do, innovation requires us to think out of the box and to plan as to how to protect the customer in such situation. Therefore, innovation has to start with each individual in the company and then to achieve it with thought leadership has to be the way forward. (As told to Durgesh Prakash)

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