10 ways to kill your security career

Most CISOs don’t expect a breach to get them fired.

Only 6.8% of the 207 U.S.-based CISOs surveyed by Osterman Research for the Nominet 2019 report, Life Inside the Perimeter: Understanding the Modern CISO, believe that a significant security breach would lead to their termination. Only 21.7% say they’d even get an official warning. In fact, a majority of CISOs – 56% – say their fellow executives would come to their aid and help them resolve it.

CISOs, however, still recognize that there’s a lot riding on their performance, and they feel that heat. The same study, for example, found 55% of the 408 U.S. and U.K. CISOs surveyed pegged their average job tenure at less than three years, while 30% put it at less than two. (The U.S. Department of Labor says it’s actually 4.2 years.)

It’s hard to determine how much of that churn is voluntary. Many CISOs certainly leave on good terms and of their own accord. But executive advisors report (and some high-profile cases prove) that others are squeezed out for various reasons and some are, indeed, fired outright.

What, then, can lead to such fates if a breach isn’t what gets a CISO sacked? Here experts share 10 scenarios that can get a security executive canned.

To continue reading this article register now

The 10 most powerful cybersecurity companies