Picture this.  A security manager sits quietly contemplating the previous several months.  No known successful attacks against her network.  No loss of revenue or productivity due to system failure/recoverablity issues.  Her team flawlessly executed two disaster recovery tests.  Her boss is happy, telling everyone that the network is secure due to her efforts.  Life is good.  What’s wrong with this picture?

There’s nothing wrong with it if the security manager and her boss understand that this period of calm is temporary.  As attackers come up with new ways to penetrate and compromise business networks, security teams must remain flexible, continuously working to adjust safeguards to keep the network safe. 

Too often these periods of safe computing are perceived by management as an end state.  In other words, security efforts have achieved their objectives; it’s time to move on to something else.  This is dangerous thinking.  

Security management is an ongoing process.  It requires continous monitoring, analysis, and adjustment to maintain information asset protection at an acceptable level.  It’s the responsibility of the security professional to educate her peers, subordinates, and executive management of this fact.  Failing to do so will inevitably result in a weakened network defense, and an eventual attack causing significant business loss.   

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