Event Recording

Matthias Canisius: Return to Base | The CISO's Guide to Preparing A COVID-19 Exit Strategy


While governments and public healthcare specialists are looking into the timing and manner of reopening the economy, it is clear that at some point in the hopefully not-too-distant future restrictions will be eased and businesses will return to normal operations. Returning to recently-vacated offices will certainly signify a return to normality, and for most, that will be a welcome relief after working from home for an extended period. However, just as the shift to working from home required organizations to adapt and act differently, so will the return to the office. In this keynote, we discuss the preparation CISOs should consider making to offset a number of security implications that arise from returning your workforce from home and back to the office.

So you can see everything. Yes. You can see my sites. Perfect. Yeah. So he, hello everybody. My name is Matthias, so, and I'm happy to run you through some thoughts, actually, I'm working for a vendor as you, as you know, but it's not a vendor conversation at all. It's, it's really about what we see when we're talking to customers, what thoughts come up and it doesn't really claim to be complete at any sense. I also received some good ideas from the, from the speeches I listened to. And yeah, the reason why I like the topic is it has such a positive notion, right? So we are cooking all in that COVID soup. And I mean, most of us can't even hear it. I'm working out of home offices since 20 years and I'm, I'm boiling in my own soup as well, desperately wanting to go out, sitting in a plane on a train, talking to customers personally.
And I feel completely humanized these days. And therefore, I mean, to me, it feels like there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Although we, we definitely don't know everything around the virus at all and, and how it gonna evolve, but there's a lot of reason to be optimistic. And that's why I like to talk you through some ideas on, on what happens once we are gonna return. And one thing that when I'm talking to customers also to, to, to very conservative ones, sometimes who have very strong compliance regulations and stuff like that, the, the question to me is how will out of that Corona area out of that Corona time will the workplace change. So it's it work still? Something, a place we go to or is, is it, is it just something we do, right. I, I mean, Richard Branson years ago, he said something like my work is where my laptop is.
Right. And I, I feel the same because I'm used to, but we see that this is not, not normal to most, most of us. So it will be very exciting to see how this, how the workplace will change, how the way will change. We gonna incorporate, collaborate and interact with each other. And I'm sure we are gonna run and already do that. I think thinking about how to, to redesign not only remote access, but also the tools we are working with rethink that, redesign it. And, and re-architect the way we are currently collaborating. We are currently designing our, our communication processes at all. And I, as I said, I hope I have some exciting ideas or some interesting thoughts around that. And before I jump a bit deeper into that, we all know that, and we've heard it a lot of time. Crisis is, is chance.
Cha change is chance stuff like this, but I think it's really true. I mean, whenever you had an argumentation with your wife or with your husband, if you do it right, and if you do it with respect, you gain something out of it. You're the next level. If you have an escalation with a customer and this, this stuff simply happens and you, you deal with it respectfully open and open, open headed, and, and open-hearted sometimes as well, then you gain something, you gain trust. You, you come to the next level. And I think Corona also kind of put some, some, some items on the surface that were boiling in our, in our, on our desks in. So while I think this is also pretty positive, so there will be a game in that game. And I, I think that's, that's something to keep in mind beside all the limitations.
Once it hit us. I, I mean, it hit me by surprise. The COVID was something that was of a far distance. And I think most of us were not really prepared, especially when you're listened, listening to Jean castoff in the SME space, even even more. And, and we stood in that together. We complied with that, stay at home rule. And many processes came to Hal, the physical world kind of imploded. And we had to, to stay home and, and, and, and to, but, but somehow keep, keep, keep the business running, which is not for everybody possible doing it out of a, out of a remote office. I mean, stewards can't work except in a, in a plane. Right. So, but I think overall, we managed that pretty well. We, we kind of responded to the changed circumstances and I, I really was surprised we closed one of our largest POS during COVID. And usually it was a large bank. And usually in banks, they have a pretty analog process when signing large POS Hey, from, from, from now to, from, from yesterday to tomorrow, they moved to digital to a digital way of signing POS. So this stuff happened also in large organizations and small organizations. And it was, to me also kind of very positive to see how fast we kind of aligned with these changed circumstances. And that is also something that makes me optimistic for the future.
So the new reality forced us to deal with the workplace differently, change physical interaction, and to deal with a pretty, pretty increased volume of it demand. Also, something to think about is, I, I mean, a colleague recently said it to me, the, the, the text based communication increased dramatically because we don't see each other. So we, we tend to write more. So the water boiling water cooling conversations don't happen anymore. We use different tools so that I'm coming to that. So a lot of change that was applied to the way we interact work and also lead our private lives. I mean, we do happy hours now with zoom, right? Drinking GS together in order to, to stay close, even virtually. And yeah, obviously we, we needed to enable remote working. And what I found interesting here is that 5% roughly of, of people that are, that are that working remotely or are capable of working remotely out of, out of a hundred, every fifth one.
And I think this is this now moved to almost a hundred percent. So, which is a 20 fold increase of traffic through lines out of unsecure home office, over 20 bucks routers and stuff like that. The number of cyber security incidents from remote workers dramatically increases and stuff like this. So it, number of laptops try to buy a webcam. These days it's almost impossible or twice, or, or even more the price than it was before, but it helped us obviously to keep things running. And this is also something we, we, I personally discovered my kids are streaming a video in the, in the living room and now trying to do a zoom session. And in parallel, my wife is surfing the internet for some, some other stuff. And we start that services are getting slower. Even very large companies have capacity problems in their systems or on their systems and stuff.
Stuff is, is, is getting slower than it was before corporate information is everywhere. So you find a WhatsApp here, a WhatsApp picture here, and that, that probably replaces the water boiling conversation, right? So we use other tools and, and there's the saying that users fill the gap. And this is actually true, so that whenever it users are like water, somehow they fill the gap. If they need some, some storage here or some communication left and right. And probably we were not set up to have all those tools corporate wise ready. And therefore, yes, as I said, we are gonna find corporate information everywhere these days due to the fact that, that we, as I said, probably weren't prepared. And yeah, this is a little bit funny, but it is the reality. The, the, the line between work and leisure is really blurring. So there is nothing anymore such as a hard parameter or sitting, just sitting in the large castle where everything is safe and trusted.
So the lines between work and leisure is, is blurring. And obviously, as, as I said before, that creates a risk. We are, I mean, I, I recently did a scan in my, in my home network here, and I had 40 network devices running an Android. Most of them, IOT devices, running a Linux, an Android, or whatever. Recently my, my stove asked me, Hey, what is the wifi password? And I said, Hey, come on. I wanted to do chicken. I don't want to, yeah, it is as it is, but also who can access your laptop? Are you, are you going to, to, to access corporate data through your private device and stuff like this is, is something that is, that, that is daily business at the moment. And as I said, it, it creates, it creates a lot of risk when thinking about rebuilding. And this is the, as I said, the, once we, we are closer to that light, but at the end of the tunnel, but, but need to think about it actually now I think there are some quick wins respectively.
There are some, some, some items we can, we can, we should consider short term or even immediately. And some, some things are pretty obvious or most of them are pretty obviously. And we have also written a, a more extended kind of block around that on our website. But one thing is obviously, Hey, returning that the returning devices are safe to use. And I think it is, it is the best way to deal with that. Assuming that any device that we are return is kind of vulnerable or, or has been hacked, I guess, with this, with this assumption in mind, you, you are triggering the right, the right actions on your hand. And, and I mean, there are various various pieces to, to, to, to make that sure. One is for example, to run network scans for unknown device, I mean, NAZA was hacked due to a recipe pie that was unauthorized on in, in their network, right?
You, you want to make sure that, you know, what is hitting your network and wherever possible, avoid personal laptops that you, that you don't have under control, right? Or, or install your install or use your, your, your network access control wisely, use your EDR or buy one. If you don't have it to really being able to gain full visibility. And also, also knowing what is happening on any of your devices, device control is the next piece, right? I mean, there's this set of, of things you, you need to make sure in order to, to, to make sure that the returning devices are safe, once they go back into your, into your office environment, the second piece is keep insecure software of your network. Also pretty obvious, but this has also set of options. You, you can do on update Doss and the software go and patch, whatever needs to be patched and what was probably not patched because people were not running it into your, into your land-based network inventory, the software that's been used based on risk level while using probably your, your endpoint detachment response to stuff like this in order to make sure that the software that is in your network is, is, is, is patched, is not vulnerable.
And it's the software you are really keen to use. Yeah. And last piece, obviously preparing processes and procedures. I mean, it starts with password resetting procedures, things like that, very basic stuff to make sure that the password that has probably been shared with half of the family, including grandpas and mothers in-law is, is, is, is kind of secure again and, and will be re resetted new employees that probably hit, hit your company, that they are set up properly. People that you probably had to terminate remotely. I mean, it's sad, but it it's a reality that these devices and these pro that you have created procedures around that as well, and obviously be ready for working from home. And I guess this is something very important, also mid and long term. And I guess when I listened to the, to the conversations today, I think that that most topics haven't really changed due to COVID.
But I think the, the, the, they have shifted in terms of priority. And one priority has to be in future embrace, remote working, and not only because of the next crisis, it's also about attraction and retention of employees. I mean, it's a cultural piece. And especially younger people want to have flexibility. They want to be in, in a flexible and open culture. And embracing, remote working is, is, is, is key in that. And it, and it has a game, right? I mean, on average, 1.4 days per month, remote workers work do do work more. And this, I found this kind of funny and, and people in the office is 15% of them feel distracted by their boss. So, I mean, you, you gain productivity, plus you're, you're adding a, an open culture to your, to your company. And as I said, we, we spoke to a lot of, a lot of companies, a lot of conservative verticals as well. And they, they, they really open up for this way, adding more hotel spaces rather than fixed desk, stuff like that. And I'm sure we gonna see and have to see this even more.
Yeah. I mean, this is, this is a topic for everybody increased cloud adoption. And I saw this morning, I saw from the Deutsche banks, CIO review, CIO Roundup. I have it in front of me, number eight. And it's also saying it that that COVID will be a long term boost to digitalization, not a surprise and further catalyst, the move to a public cloud. And we're gonna see that. And it makes sense, especially when you're preparing a business continuity plan, moving existing applications and service to the cloud, not forgetting about the security obviously, but you need to reduce the dependency on local networks and, and make sure you adopt this in a secure manner, the same thing here, re re moving through one tunnel to your castle, if you will, and then moving from there to, towards the, the different sources and tools you are limiting yourself, it's a poor choice for performance, and I'm sure we need to see a changed, changed architecture of remote access.
Well, that offers more flexibility towards those cloud cloud resources. Re-architect collaboration. It's the same thing thing. We have seen companies that were saying, Hey, no, to video, because the, the, the people had to use the on-prem collaboration tools that was hit in the, in the, in the, in their castles. If you will, that's not the future. And that will no, no longer work, no matter whether it's COVID or it's another crisis, or even without a crisis to, to, to, to keep business up and running to, to be efficient and to be attractive for other employers last but not least. I mean, that's the business we are in. And the way I like to think about it is rather than creating a castle and trying to access and let, let all the people remote workers and whoever is, is working in your environment through that castle is building micro castle on each endpoint.
Being able to create the parameter on the endpoint on let the, the, the, the, the endpoint be your parameter while using smart and machine learning, or, or, or AI driven technologies for endpoint detection and response that are currently moving towards even HDRs where the extends for a lot of more resources, rather than endpoints, adding also data from, from lock Fry's data from IOT devices and so on, and making sure that the communication and the, the process, your, your, your events, your devices process are secure and can, can be kind of followed up. So a lot of thoughts, I mean, we could discuss that. I think for about hours, I would like to finish with this picture, wanna say, thank you, and I'm open for whatever questions. And we are gonna see us in the panel discussion as well. So thanks a lot.

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