"Cyber security belongs to everybody"
- 22 September, 2017
- Amsterdam Security
Ethical hacker, Melanie Rieback, is a keynote speaker at the Amsterdam Security Convention. The CEO of Radically Open Security calls for more transparency in cyber security. "Keeping everything secret is one of the reasons we're not winning."
On day 2 of the Amsterdam Security Convention, keynote speaker Melanie Rieback, founder and CEO of Radically Open Security, will talk about her conviction that cyber security companies should be more open about their services. Rieback firmly believes that "knowledge sharing and transparency are the only tools to keep up with the innovative and fast criminal cyber attackers." The 38-year-old security specialist is also known as one of the most inspiring and innovative women in technology of the moment. A few questions for this visionary CEO:
Why do we need more transparency in cyber security?
Melanie Rieback: "Organisations, companies, the government, everyday people, we all need to work together to make a meaningful stand against cyber crime. Criminal hackers are a unified industry already. They do share with one another, they are not isolated entities. Our mindset of keeping everything secret and competing with each other is part of the reason that we're not winning. And in the end, it is our entire society that suffers the consequences."
Why do that on a non-profit basis?
"I wanted to create a cyber security organisation that offers a better way of doing things. In doing so, we put pressure on more commercial security firms to change. I am sure I have annoyed a couple of people in the industry with this. But I am not looking to steal their business. Other security companies can also work with our open source tools (for free). We want everybody in the industry to get better. This way, we can ultimately have a far more positive impact."
How do clients experience your transparency?
"We try to transfer a maximum of knowledge. During pen tests, we work in online chat rooms and our clients are invited to join so they can literally hear everything we say. A chat robot writes down all of the steps we take. This gives clients insight in the process and it makes them understand the tools we work with. Basically clients learn to hack their own company, and that's not only exciting, but it also opens up new perspectives."
If security firms educate clients too much, will their clients still need them in the future?
"Of course they will. It is an outdated opinion that companies should share a minimal amount of information to keep clients dependent on them. I think we should be doing exactly the opposite. If you break their lock-in, if you set your clients free by teaching them to independently do the right thing, they will keep coming back to you every single time."
Melanie Rieback, CEO of Radically Open Security, will be speaking at Amsterdam Security Convention, 1 November 2017, 14.00 hrs.