CIOs stand on the corner of innovation and security, but is security their job?

CIOs are constantly innovating and improving their technology, but is cybersecurity their job?

Today, digital disruption is pervasive in almost every industry, and this fact has earned some CIOs the title of Chief Innovation Officer. But with a massive focus on innovation, some areas in the economy tend to suffer, and cybersecurity is hit the hardest.

“We cannot talk about innovation without touching on cybersecurity. It may be scary, but to move forward we should never get stuck in the dark,” said Kendi Nderitu, Check Point, Country Manager, Kenya, during the CIO IoT and AI Summit at Crowne Plaza, Nairobi, Kenya.

According to a recent Harvey Nash/KPMG CIO survey, 89 percent of chief information officers said they are maintaining or increasing their investment in innovation, but only one in five said they were able to stop a cybersecurity attack manage “very well”.

When CIOs grapple with these harsh realities. The question then becomes: Is security the job of the Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs)? According to the dictionary definition, a CISO is the senior executive within an organization responsible for creating and maintaining the company’s vision, strategy and programs to ensure that information assets and technologies are adequately protected.

The CISO directs employees to identify, design, implement, and maintain processes across the organization to reduce information and IT risk. You will respond to incidents, establish appropriate standards and controls, manage cyber security technologies, and lead the establishment and implementation of policies and procedures. The CISO is also typically responsible for information-related compliance.

The role of CISOs is becoming increasingly important in the connected world. During the summit, Michael Michie, CISO, M-Orient Bank said that securing the intelligent infrastructure for enterprises is becoming a necessity, especially for companies that have millions of sensors and therefore many potential points of attack.

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“The role of CISOs becomes extremely complicated because the skills that CISOs now have are part of a private network that has specific connections to a larger network. But right now, in the world we’re stepping into, everything needs to be connected. To be cheaper, faster, and more reliable, they all need to be connected. Essentially, you’re told to protect the whole world, but you only work for one organization,” he added.

“The role of security in this age of connectivity falls to all.” Michie closed.