Cybersecurity systems suffer from compartmentalization.\u00a0 Vulnerability management systems know which software revisions are installed on which systems, but have no idea how endpoints and servers are connected together.\u00a0 Similarly, an anti-malware gateway can perform static and dynamic analysis on a suspicious file but doesn't know if a user downloaded analogous malware when she was connected to the Internet on a public network.\u00a0Yup, cybersecurity is simply a classic example of one hand not knowing what the other is doing.\u00a0CISOs recognize this disjointed situation and many are undertaking cybersecurity integration projects to address this problem.\u00a0 This is certainly a step in the right direction, but I find that a lot of these projects are one-off point-to-point integration efforts.\u00a0 Good idea, but CISOs should be pushing toward an ambitious endgame \u2013 omniscient cybersecurity systems.Now I know this sounds like science fiction and may remind some of my federal government reader friends of John Poindexter\u2019s Total Information Awareness (TIA) DARPA project of the early 2000s.\u00a0 Nevertheless, CISOs need a central cybersecurity systems that:Knows everything about every system on the network.\u00a0 I truly mean everything \u2013 a unique system identity, system configuration, system behavior, etc., about every server, PC, mobile device, printer, IoT sensor\/actuator. \u00a0By "system," I also mean applications, databases, scripts, and services too. \u00a0All system activities and changes should be reported back to the omniscient cybersecurity system in real-time.\u00a0 Oh yeah, system knowledge must include physical devices, VMs, and cloud-based workloads.\u00a0Provides the same capabilities about the network.\u00a0 This includes an understanding of the network devices themselves (i.e. identity, configuration, behavior, etc.), but goes much further.\u00a0 Security analysts need a detailed map of how all systems are connected together (including a description of all network security controls and where they reside on the network) for risk assessment and mitigation.\u00a0 They also need to know about network behavior and activities like port scans, protocol tunneling, suspicious connections, unknown encrypted packets, etc.\u00a0 Again, this omniscience should extend into virtual networks and the cloud.\u00a0Can pivot up-and-down the technology stack.\u00a0 One security analyst may want to start with a network view and peer up the stack at applications and databases.\u00a0 Another may begin by investigating an application administrator\u2019s activities as they progress toward several databases containing sensitive data, while a third investigation may progress from an internal user to a business partner\u2019s inventory system.\u00a0 Security analysts need the freedom to look at any IT asset, combination of IT assets, or interactions between IT assets, from any angle.Understands context.\u00a0 Rather than piece together a breadcrumb trail on their own, security analysts can use a helping hand from time-to-time.\u00a0 Individual events may be benign but may indicate a clear attack pattern in combination.\u00a0 Rules and dashboards are helpful but a truly omniscient cybersecurity system should be instrumented with algorithms and intelligence to detect patterns.\u00a0 At the very least, these systems should present analysts with alerts based upon suspicious cumulative activities rather than individual events.\u00a0Include threat intelligence.\u00a0 Internal data collection, processing, and analytics should be supplemented with threat intelligence from the wild.\u00a0 Once again, external threat intelligence should be correlated with internal system and network behavior for pattern matching, risk assessment, alerting, and presentation.\u00a0Help out with visual analytics.\u00a0 Bar charts and pie charts are okay but it\u2019s time that cybersecurity take the next step toward visual analytics.\u00a0 To get there, the industry must put a lot more work into cognitive psychology, display technology, and leading-edge graphical interfaces.\u00a0 While this effort is in its genesis, vendors like Click Security, Lancope, and Raytheon Cyber Products are forging ahead with visual analytics interfaces.\u00a0 Finally, the industry group VizSec is championing this effort, bringing together academia, government, and industry thought leaders in this area.\u00a0In summary, CISOs need a single system or an integrated architecture that can tell them everything about everything \u2013 in real-time.\u00a0 This system must be smart enough to recognize patterns and offer user-friendly visual analytics interfaces enabling analysts to easily pivot from one data point to all others.\u00a0 Armed with this type of system, cybersecurity professionals could move on to the next task \u2013 automated remediation and security operations.The omniscient cybersecurity system I\u2019ve described here is unavailable today but vendors like HP, IBM, LogRhythm, RSA, and Splunk are certainly moving in this direction.\u00a0 My guess is that omniscient cybersecurity will also include big data technology from vendors like Palantir, Platfora, Sqrrl, or Zettaset.\u00a0 Regardless of where this technology comes from however, CISOs need it ASAP.