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New & Notable

The latest news about The IT Media Group. What's happening in our world: new clients, new relationships and new initiatives.

Ottawa IT execs delve into security issues

The IT Media Group took its highly popular Strategic Insights breakfast series for IT executives to Ottawa on February 26 for an exploration into today’s key issues in IT Security.

Securing Information in an Unsecure World” featured a top-notch expert panel, which included Tom Bornais, Director, Information Security with NAV Canada, and Neils Johnson, technical evangelist for event sponsor Symantec. Leading the discussion was John Pickett, The IT Media Group’s VP, Executive Programs.

The information-packed session provided a variety of valuable insights for the many executives in attendance, including CIOs, directors and heads of security from government, academia and the private sector.

One topical area of discussion was the recent spate of bank thefts resulting from IT security breaches.

“We sometimes leave our environments somewhat exploitable,” said Johnson. “It’s a wake-up call to say what’s really important and what's not. There’s some basic hygiene that needs to occur on a day-to-day basis that we take for granted, such as keeping patch levels where they need to be. Eighty percent of security breaches going on right now would be avoided if patch levels were where they’re supposed to be. So it’s not about feeds and speeds. It’s about the knowledge that your security infrastructure is working with, as opposed to the speed at which your security infrastructure is running.”

Bornais noted that his organization has implemented a new, more effective patching strategy, replacing one that happened in random ways through multiple groups, relying on the lines of business to know what has to be done.

“We provided an overarching governance committee to follow through and track those patch management cycles. And we had to have the commitment, because it’s very difficult to get the customer agree to downtime for a patch,” he said. “We had to get something that was top-down, from the senior executives, saying, ‘This will happen every quarter – prepare for it.’ Now that the business lines are getting into the quarterly rhythm, they’re starting to plan for it.”

Many other important issues were discussed during the session, including security and the Cloud, challenges resulting from the growth of shadow IT, strategies around mobility and BYOD security, and employee security awareness and staff education. These topics will be discussed more fully in a highlights article, appearing in the Events section of our Web site in mid-March. Also watch for a selection of video highlights from the Ottawa session in our Videos section.

The IT Media Group hosts Strategic Insights sessions and executive roundtables across Canada on a regular basis. If you are an IT or security executive, we would be happy to have you join us when we are in your community. To ensure that you receive an invitation, please see our VIP Registration Form and enter your contact information.

We look forward to seeing you.

About The IT Media Group
The IT Media Group serves the IT industry by creating great events, resources and connections for CIOs. Our leadership team includes media personalities John Pickett and Dave Carey, who have been high-profile supporters and champions of the Canadian CIO community for nearly two decades, and Nasheen Liu, a marketing expert with a wealth of experience in first-tier IT firms.

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