One in four organizations are exposed for six months or longer due to a lack of qualified security workers. And in Europe almost one-third of cyber security job openings remain unfilled. That’s the challenging picture reported by ISACA at this year’s RSA Conference.

You’re thinking, “tell me something I don’t know.”

The Benchmark study in our 2017 Annual Cybersecurity Report, takes a broader look at the obstacles to security and finds that budget, compatibility issues with legacy systems, and the struggle to find talent top the list.
The truth you know is we have to resource people, process, and technology. You’re living the reality that process support and resourcing capacity are not keeping pace with the technological changes brought on by the larger innovation curves that drive our digital businesses.

The budgets you do invest in technology, in particular, need to work harder to reduce the press on overstretched staff even as you re-calibrate processes to changing business models.

The effective way to do this is with solutions that are simple, open, and automated. Simple can help your staff get up and running fast with products that are simpler to deploy or scale. Open addresses compatibility challenges so products integrate seamlessly for more powerful security responses.  And integration delivers automation with products working together to offset limited manpower. This is how security becomes a force multiplier that helps your budget work harder while your people work smarter.

Over the past several we talked about how Cisco is making security more effective with solutions that are simple, open, and automated. At RSAC and Cisco Live Berlin we continued down that path, unveiling more solutions that push this strategy forward. Here are just five highlights:

  1. We have launched the industry’s first Secure Internet Gateway (SIG), Cisco Umbrella, providing a seamless first line of defense against bad domains, URLs, IPS, and files – blocking malicious connections before they are even established. It is simple – you can deploy it in under an hour and it doesn’t require an agent. It’s a type of initial force field that employees don’t even notice as it protects them regardless of where they are located, on and off the network. Published APIs allow it to get threat intelligence from any source to ensure up to date protection.
  2. Cisco Cloudlock is a simple way to get ahead of the business and mobile users that are increasingly moving to SaaS applications and bypassing protections offered by the corporate network. It provides visibility and control for SaaS apps both on and off the network so you can more easily protect this increasingly targeted threat vector.
  3. Cisco Firepower 2100 Series NGFWs are ideal for midsized organizations to deploy from the Internet edge to the data center, without having to choose between protection and performance. Network operations teams can stay true to job one – keeping the network blazing fast – because our NGFWs won’t become a network bottleneck or lose effectiveness when you turn on additional defenses. And Cisco NGFW management has never been easier. The 2100 keeps security simple however – and can go from connection to protection in just 5 minutes with Firepower Device Manager, a crisp web-based local manager.
  4. Cisco Defense Orchestrator, now available in Europe and including support for Cisco Web Security Appliance, simplifies policy management while making security policy stronger. Network operations staff can easily manage thousands of security devices (Cisco ASA, Cisco NGFW, Cisco Umbrella, Cisco WSA) from a simple cloud-based portal. Without being a security expert, you can optimize, configure, and manage policies across your entire network, whether you have dozens or thousands of locations.
  5. As I discussed at length in my last post, Cisco Threat Intelligence Director uses open industry standards to easily ingest third-party threat feeds and data from Threat Intelligence Platforms (TIPs) to your network sensors and NGFWs. It provides an open, automated way to operationalize threat intelligence from multiple sources across our environment to deliver even more effective security.

You can expect to see more solutions from Cisco throughout the year that are simple, open, and automated. It’s a resourceful and effective approach to address the talent shortage and keep your business more secure.



Jason Lamar

Senior Director

Security Product Management Group