Forum Host Bill Raisch: Larry as CEO of the Internet Security Alliance, you have a definitive multi-sector perspective both through your members as well as through your wider engagement. Your organization has also done a substantial amount of research in the digital arena and produced some significant thought leadership as well as policy products to the US Government and others.
With that lens as a starting point, What do you see as one of the most important disruptors facing global corporations, markets and/or wider society?
Larry Clinton: The digital revolution is the most disruptive force affecting global markets today. Most organizations have by now begun to factor into their business plans the positive elements of digitization such as web based marketing, inventory efficiencies, off-site servicing and employee management systems. Moreover, the globalization of markets has been tremendously accelerated by digitalization bringing both massive new opportunities and new competitors, However enterprises have been slow to appreciate the full extent of their vulnerability to cyber-attacks. Many organizations are still limiting their notion of the downside of digital attacks to comparatively small items such as IT and website downtime. In reality their most precious business secrets, intellectual property and long term competitiveness are being challenged. Sometimes their security is being undermined by competitive needs to adopt strategies and technologies, such as the use of international supply chains and cloud computing systems that inherently undermine their security. Many are also fighting advanced cyber threats with outdated theories and systems such as perimeter defense, oriented anti-virus and passwords that are of marginal effectiveness against modern attacks.
Bill Raisch: Ok, then what do you see as the potential impacts of “digitalization” as a disruptor?
Larry Clinton: Digitalization has fundamentally changed the way we need to understand almost everything, concepts of self, concepts of privacy, concepts of national defense and business economics. Its disruptive effects are barely being considered let alone fully understood.
Bill Raisch: Then what strategies would you suggest to address the digitalization disruptor – to either mitigate negative impacts and/or to capitalize on potential opportunities?
Larry Clinton: There are many many things that ought to be done to manage the effect digitization’s effects. The most basic of these is to broaden the notion of what we are discussing. Too often both corporate and national policy makers are thinking of cyber issues as simply “IT” issues to be managed by technologies and associated standards and practices. In reality this is an enterprise-wide risk management issue that must be understood and addressed in a multi-faceted and comprehensive approach integrating technology with business economics (both the good and the bad) as well as enlightened national policy.
Posted by Bill Raisch, Host – Global Disruptors Forum