Welcome to my CISO CORNER feature for paid subscribers. Every Monday, I share insights from thought leaders through exclusive interviews, article summaries, and thought leadership articles. Below is my exclusive interview, conducted by email, with Robert Hansen, CTO of Bit Discovery and a "floating" CISO for a number of companies, about the challenges CISOs face on a daily basis. [The interview has been edited for readability and length.]
Inside Security: What does being a CISO mean to you?
Robert Hansen: Being a CISO means you accept the challenge, upside, and sometimes downside, of being the lightning rod for all things security. One of the board members gets an email from Nigeria. You’re getting the call. A big customer thinks they found an issue that will affect a deal. You’re likely going to have to get involved. A CISO has an incredible amount of power, while often being in charge of very little. The infosec teams tend to be dwarfed by any other internal department, yet they offer one of the most critical components to any sufficiently large organization that pays for itself many times over.