• United States



by CSO Staff

Features of ‘The CSO Dream Office’

Jun 01, 20065 mins
IT LeadershipTechnology Industry

The June 2006 issue of CSO was dedicated to Landing Your Dream Job. As part of that theme, we created a fanciful illustration of a CSO’s dream office for the fun end page known as Debriefing. The picture included 15 features of a dream office pertinent to security, and several other nonsecurity features contributed to making the office a dream office. Did you find them all? Check this list to see:

We begin with a full-size, soundproof Shooting Range (1) so that this CSO, a former Army officer and Secret Service agent can keep his marksman’s skills honed. Hey, some people do yoga to relax, our CSO just happens to like strafing moving targets with a series of well-placed shots from his .357. He also likes to stay current, so he invested in a Taser and Taser Dummy (2). It’s pretty cool the way the dummy jitters when you plunk it with that jolt-on-a-rope.

No CSO office is complete without a wall of surveillance camera feed (3). Our CSO can see every square inch of this place in high-def. And he never has to leave his desk, because of his Super Universal Remote (4) that operates everything in the room. That thing is sweet!

The Red Bat Phone (5) might look like a gag gift, but beware. That’s a dedicated, fully encrypted, triply redundant channel with direct access to all five military branches, the state police, Secret Service, FBI, CIA and, of course, Panera. Is there any emergency more serious than a lunch emergency? Anyway, if that puppy starts glowing red, it means a crisis is at hand. Perhaps a shady intruder is spotted on the premises, or maybe the marketing department is having an ice cream social. Whatever the cause for concern, our CSO has a Secret War Room (6) behind the bookcase to convene his special ops team. If taking cover is the only response to a crisis, look closely and you’ll see our CSO has direct access to the underground bunker (7), right beneath his desk. The bunker is where all the suits go in the event of a catastrophe, but, shhh, our CSO has been known to duck down there for a nap, especially on a Friday before a long weekend.

When you run security, extracting confessions is part of the job. To facilitate the process, our CSO uses a good old-fashioned Interrogation Chair (8). The high, straight back makes for uneasy sitting, and the lamp is halogen for added heat, creating maximum discomfort for the perp. Of course the chair faces the Polygraph Machine (9), staring back at the suspect to remind him that even if he survives the Sipowicz routine, he won’t get past the lie detector. Sometimes these sessions get a little outside protocol. You know you’ve got to break a few heads—I mean eggs!—to make an omelet. To prevent someone from overhearing the aggressive interrogation techniques, a high-powered White and Pink Noise Generator (10) sits on the desk to scuttle eavesdroppers.

Threats and vulnerabilities are one thing, but the real challenge of the CSO job is dealing with the CEO and CFO. Not to worry, an ample supply of Truth Serum and Smelling Salts (11, 12) are on hand. Our CSO picks up some gourmet coffee on the way to the office, slips the Mickey and drops off the “gift” at the CFO’s desk. Before you know it, Barry Beancounter is telling him just how much Marketing spent on the latest ad campaign featuring chimpanzees in tutus. The smelling salts are for when the CSO passes on this intel to the CEO. Works every time.

That bank of IT infrastructure might look complex, but the CSO has it well-organized. Defensive Computing (13) on the left-that’s your firewalls, your IDS, your antivirus, all the stuff that’s supposed to keep bad guys out. On the right, it’s Offensive Computing (14), for, ahem, competitive intelligence and other special ops that he’d rather not talk about, thank you.

Finally, there’s the HazMat Kit (15), which he had to get with his grant from the Department of Homeland Security. He’s been meaning to put that in the closet.

But wait, there’s more. The old saw “All work and no play makes the CSO go ballistic” means this office has some other features to help the CSO unwind. By that we mean keep him sane. The centerpiece, obviously, is the 60-inch High-Def LCD TV (A), with all five seasons of 24 preloaded, of course. Reading Material (B) on the bookshelf includes some business titles—The World’s Most Dangerous Places and The Seven Habits of Highly Successful People (which, when tilted, opens the secret passage to the war room)—but the real prizes here are the non-work-related titles: King Lear, The Da Vinci Code and, of course, The Poetry of Emily Dickinson. Also on the shelf, a Photo-op with the Prez (C) taken during a ceremony of “Everyday Heroes” at which our CSO got a plaque for defusing the notorious Powdered Sugar Crisis (hey, it looked a lot like anthrax).

What if the Bat Phone were ringing off the hook while someone was spotted on the CCTV screens stealing office supplies and the IT infrastructure was going haywire, all at the same time? You’d need something to back you off the ledge too. That’s why our CSO keeps a Soothing Water Feature (D) on his desk, and “The Football” (E)—an old gift from the gang when he left the Secret Service, where he used to carry the nuclear launch phone. Just looking at it reminds him of Smitty and Jefferson and the good times they had on inaugural detail. By the time he turns on the Massage Mate (F) feature of his chair and dips into his Secret Stash of Ho-Ho’s (G) under his desk blotter, all those crises won’t seem so bad.

Finally, the conference table flips over into a Full-Sized Luxury Poker Table (H), where the CSO has been known to relieve the CIO of his bonus, holding stones against three-of-a-kind.

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