As you look back over your IT career, you’ve probably (hopefully) had your share of success stories and significant accomplishments. But there are events looming out there that may have a massive impact on your company and your career in the worst possible way. The classic line from the movie Backdraft (1991) sums it up perfectly, “You see that flash of light in the corner of your eye? That’s your career dissipation light. It just went into high gear.”
Here are just a few reasons why your Career Dissipation Light can go into high gear (this = bad):
1. The Finance System is DOWN. And has been for 48 hours.
The financial system is technically up and running but no one can login, receive payments, issue new invoices or cut purchase orders. Turns out that you’ve got a network worm running rampant on the internal network … who knew? Your team was supposed to!
2. Contractors Gone Wild
So your company develops applications that are used by 95% of the Fortune 500. Your source code repository is your company’s most critical data asset. Here’s the news flash: Your most critical data asset was stolen this morning when the new app dev contractor reported to work. He simply went in, archived all the source code and uploaded it to his home network. Problem is no one stopped it…hey, no one even knew about it.
3. Losing your job to Asian hackers? PRICELESS. (A MasterCard Moment)
This one will put your CDL into overdrive. Picture this: Your company is experiencing explosive growth. It sells goods and services over the ‘Net and you are picking up new customers by the hundreds every day. Life is good!
You leave for vacation expecting some well earned rest and relaxation. However on day one, your vacation is blown out of the water when you get “the call.” It’s the network team lead calling every number he has to track you down. When he gets you live, he gives you the low down:
- MasterCard has contacted your company. Thousands of MasterCard customers are reporting credit card fraud … going back for 90 days. The common thread among all of these reports is that 100% of these consumers are your customers.
- Network packet captures from this morning show that customer records are being copied in real time to a server at a university in China.
- The network team lead thinks that multiple servers have been compromised in your cloud computing environment and some person or process is continually resetting the admin password.
- MasterCard is demanding that your company’s system be taken off the ‘Net immediately and is threatening a $25k per month fine because of non-compliance with PCI.
The network team lead wraps by saying the CEO has an emergency meeting with the board at 8:30 AM tomorrow morning so he wants you in his office by 8:00 PM tonight. You hang up the phone, tell your spouse and kids to pack their bags, and head home early to try to save your job.
These different scenarios illustrate how absolutely vital a comprehensive data protection plan is to your business; one that includes 7×24x365 monitoring, high availability, and multiple layers of protection. Unfortunately, there is no one single antidote to ward off all attempts. But a cross-functional approach is the best choice and absolutely necessary to safeguard your business-critical information and applications from outside attacks. You can’t afford NOT to have a well-defined security policy in place; the future of your job and the longevity of your company depend on it!
Jim Brown, CISSP
Headquartered in Charlotte, NC, nGuard is a valued Consonus manufacturing partner in the security arean, providing security assessments, managed security services and security solutions to companies located in the US. nGuard’s intense focus on real world security expertise and internationally recognized security certifications allows the firm to service a broad range of companies and industries. For more information, please visit www.nguard.com.