How to become a CISO

The role of Chief Information Security Officer has been around for a couple of decades. And while many large companies still don’t have a dedicated CISO, fallout from prominent security breaches and the increasing visibility of information security in general might change that, soon.

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How do executives deliver information security to their organizations? How did they develop the unique combination of technical understanding and leadership competency to lead cybersecurity departments? By chronicling the career journey of several cybersecurity executives, you will learn how they became executives and their approach to deliver security.

Twenty years ago, few organizations had a dedicated executive focused on cybersecurity matters. Today, many companies and government organizations have dedicated cybersecurity organizations and executive leaders.

Building knowledge and getting hired

Success as a CISO requires technical expertise, robust communication skills and a strong network. There are many roads to the CISO role because the role is relatively new and security challenges evolve rapidly. Bernie Cowens, CISO at the Pacific Gas & Electric Company, started his security career in the U.S. Army where he focused on protecting physical assets and military intelligence.

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