• United States



A Call to Cyber Security Action: Think Globally and Act Locally

Oct 04, 20093 mins
IT Leadership

  I recently visited Africa for the first time, and I was impressed. The South African government invited me to give a keynote speech at GovTech 2009 in Durban on hot cyber security trends within governments around the world. Not only was the conference impressive, I met people of different nationalities before, during and after the conference who convinced me that we have cyber allies in every corner of the globe. 

 As I think back on what I learned in South Africa, I was truly humbled by the trip. The world is a big place, and there are a lot of good things going on. America doesn’t have a corner on protecting the Internet. Cyber experts: we need to think globally and act locally.

 The Govtech 2009 Conference offered speakers from Brazil to South Korea, Europe to Canada as well as many South African experts. The excitement was evident in a country that will host the 2010 FIFA World Cup. My talk covered what’s hot and what’s not in government cybersecurity, and you can download my powerpoint slides from their website by going to 2:45 PM on this conference portal page.

 The interesting thing is the similar technology or cyber battles that we are fighting. We all know that cybersecurity is truly a global set of problems, and the Internet knows no borders. However, we (or at least I) tend to forget that solutions can be offered from countries that go well beyond our traditional NATO supporters. For example: I heard very interesting perspectives and tactics for dealing with the Nigerian Internet scams from people who have lived in Nigeria and know these people first hand.

 I also heard some fascinating “thought-leading” approaches and case studies on identity management from countries as diverse as Austria and South Korea. (I recommend downloading those presentations as well. ) Both of those countries are well ahead of the USA in e-government adoption and secure digital identities for their citizens.

 I even met a gentleman on the flight back to the USA who described a recent Secure ICT conference in Nairobi, Kenya – of all places! This banker was working on partnerships between US and African countries on technology matters. This group plans more conferences throughout Africa in the coming years.

 Yes, we all know about excellent Israeli or European countries with cyber solutions, but who would think that the next generation of technology and security leaders may come from somewhere on the African continent or from Asia or South America. I now do.

What are your thoughts on global security trends and solutions?


Daniel J. Lohrmann is an internationally recognized cybersecurity leader, technologist and author. During his distinguished career, Dan has served global organizations in the public and private sectors in a variety of executive leadership capacities, including enterprise-wide Chief Security Officer (CSO), Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) roles in Michigan State Government. Dan was named: "CSO of the Year," "Public Official of the Year," and a Computerworld "Premier 100 IT Leader." Dan is the co-author of the Wiley book, “Cyber Mayday and the Day After: A Leader’s Guide to Preparing, Managing and Recovering From Inevitable Business Disruptions.” Dan Lohrmann joined Presidio in November 2021 as an advisory CISO supporting mainly public sector clients. He formerly served as the Chief Strategist and Chief Security Officer for Security Mentor, Inc. Dan started his career at the National Security Agency (NSA). He worked for three years in England as a senior network engineer for Lockheed Martin (formerly Loral Aerospace) and for four years as a technical director for ManTech International in a US / UK military facility. Lohrmann is on the advisory board for four university information assurance (IA) programs, including Norwich University, University of Detroit Mercy (UDM), Valparaiso University and Walsh College. Earlier in his career he authored two books - Virtual Integrity: Faithfully Navigating the Brave New Web and BYOD For You: The Guide to Bring Your Own Device to Work. Mr. Lohrmann holds a Master's Degree in Computer Science (CS) from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, and a Bachelor's Degree in CS from Valparaiso University in Indiana.

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