Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: William Schmarzo, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, John Basso

Related Topics: Cloud Security, Java IoT, Industrial IoT, Microservices Expo, Agile Computing, Release Management

Cloud Security: Article

What Is the Future of Security Incident Response?

An interview with CyberSponse CEO Joseph Loomis

With the common theme in today's security management conversations being "your security will fail" and "expect to be breached," there's no question that there has been increased interest in the area of incident response. The industry is realizing that the addition of regulations, people, or even product features, is not going to cut it - a next generation incident response offering is needed.

To get a view of what the next-generation incident response solution might look like, Web Security Journal sat down with entrepreneur and life-long incident response veteran, Joseph Loomis, a cooperative member with the FBI and DEA's divisions on Cybercrime and founder and CEO of Phoenix-based CyberSponse.

WSJ: Tell us a little bit about yourself - why does incident response interest you enough to start a company that appears to be all IR all the time?

Joseph Loomis: The desire to help people and businesses in need is in my bones. In fact, my experience with incident response goes all the way back to my childhood days when my father and his friends saw a gap in community protection and emergency "incident" response, and in turn created an entirely new fire department for our town. What I saw was that most people aren't aware that nearly every medical emergency - even if not fire related - is responded to by the fire department. My father and his friends came up with their own incident response program - they saw the need and made it a reality. They took the bull by the horns, figured it out, and worked on it until they got it right. Watching them, I repeatedly got to see how people responded during traumatic/chaotic events.

Like my father, I too served six years in the military, an experience that allowed me to help individuals, organizations, and countries alike. Shortly after completing my service with the armed forces and attending the University of Florida for Electrical Engineering, I was working for an electronics manufacturer in California. While working as the director of engineering, I saw the need for businesses to protect their assets in the online world. In response to this need, I founded NetEnforcers, a company chartered with protecting online brands and intellectual property. After successfully growing the company and securing customers like Apple, Microsoft, Cisco, Samsung, LG and Pfizer, I sold NetEnforcers, both debt-free and very profitable. Soon after, I began to look for the next area where I could help the world become a better place.

As a formally licensed Private Investigator and a cooperative member with the FBI & DEA's divisions on Cybercrime, I have been fortunate to connect with other entrepreneurs and security industry experts that share the same goals as I do. In 2011, I looked to Spyro Malaspinas, a proven, trusted, and innovative information security leader and a long time friend, to partner with me as a co-founder for CyberSponse - a Phoenix-based company chartered with helping organizations successfully respond to the inevitable security breach. Together Spyro and I developed the business case that would make CyberSponse a reality.

WSJ: What do you see as the biggest challenge faced by organizations with respect to security incident response?

Loomis: As you can imagine, my exposure to fire response, medical response, and military response presented me with far worse situations than a firewall breach. It's safe to say that these experiences taught me how to remain calm under pressure, to recognize how important planning is, and to appreciate how critical communication is during a crisis. Relating this back to cybersecurity, I find the biggest challenge in IR is having the right information available to the right people on the IR team at the right time, and being able to communicate and collaborate throughout the entire response process.

For example, most IR programs involve the use of panicky conference calls and drawn-out email communications, both of which seem to get in the way when something really serious is happening. If you haven't been through it, it may be hard for you to understand. But think about it for a minute - speed of communication is critical during an incident. Even if the right people are included in an email thread, if the critical person is not looking at their email program when it really matters, something can get missed. Similarly, oftentimes the IR leads don't have a clear view of who's doing what and when, regardless of the communication methods used.

WSJ: If you were to pick one big thing that has to change for IR, what would that be?

Loomis: Collaborative communication. The problem is that most IR personnel only know the email/conference call method to incident response. The improvement of standard IR methods needs to be the focus of organizations. In my mind, this is exactly where IR necessitates transformation. New methods of communication need to be leveraged; we need to move things from an ad-hoc model where organizations are forced to jump the tracks, to a cohesive experience that enables teams to communicate and collaborate. We could look to "The Computer Incident Response Planning Handbook" by Neal K McCarthy as a starting point for how to begin this transformation as it is a great source for what works during IR..

WSJ: What prompted you to tackle these challenges with your founding of CyberSponse?

Loomis: I know from first-hand experience that leadership, coordination, communication, planning, and collaboration are key elements to controlling a chaotic situation. Reaching out to old friends that were familiar with security, Spyro included, we decided to form CyberSponse. After digesting the business model and vetting it and the technology plans with some great contacts in the security world, I elected to personally invest over what will be 2M when we hit the market. Our founding management team has been developed through a close network of experienced and trusted friends and partners. And, rather than building an engineering team from the ground up, we looked to a development genius who already had an experienced and functional team, Paul Janisko. He quickly joined the march, and right from the start, we found ourselves with a solid plan, a solid team, and a solid solution to a problem that is not going away.

We are well positioned to succeed and intend to make CyberSponse a reality very soon, a reality that will change the face of IR forever, a reality that will seen by the world at the upcoming launch at RSA 2013 in San Francisco.

WSJ: How will CyberSponse shape the future of incident response?

Loomis: While our solution is far from simple to develop, simply put, CyberSponse is going to bring the efficiency, economics, transparency, and analytics that IR has needed for a long time. No more relying solely on ticketing systems, no more conference calls lasting 6 hours, no more meetings to have meetings. The CyberSponse solution has been tailored to handle the future of IR, designed specifically to streamline the use of a variety of technologies such as SMS, instant messaging, secure document collaboration, and mobile (to name a few). One example I can share pre-launch is that the CyberSponse system will offer built-in tools and training which will help teams become more prepared for a breach when it occurs. Also, by partnering with cutting edge providers like FireHost, Carbon Black, and Blackhills InfoSec, CyberSponse is going to put the power of IR back in the hands of the IR team in a way they've never experienced before, giving them the ability to respond with confidence from wherever they are.

WSJ: What does the future hold for CyberSponse?

Loomis: Legacy technologies like email and ticketing systems are holding the IR teams back, forcing them to operate outside even the best laid out IR plans. In fact, best practices such as NIST SP800-61 and ISO-27035 call for organizations to stay out of email when an incident occurs - not use it as the main tool for communication. With several patents pending, this is the future for CyberSponse - we will bring the IR teams up to date with a next generation IR solution so they can actually follow industry standards, guidelines, regulations, and more - while becoming more effective and efficient in their IR programs while doing so. CyberSponse will provide the perfect solution for companies small and large, leveraging a cyber-response community we help build where companies help each other fight cyber-crime and respond to cyber-attacks.

One final thought that I would add with respect to standards and regulations is the IR audit trail. CyberSponse, effectively operating as a secure bunker for all IR activities, will keep track of everything IR related and keep it secure within the bunker. Organizations will be able to see and report on what Resource A did and what Resource B forgot to do - even if one of those resources is an external service provider bound to an IR SLA. This will be an auditors dream - and will help the organization improve upon future IR activities.

More Stories By Liz McMillan

News Desk compiles and publishes breaking news stories, press releases and latest news articles as they happen.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
The cloud market growth today is largely in public clouds. While there is a lot of spend in IT departments in virtualization, these aren’t yet translating into a true “cloud” experience within the enterprise. What is stopping the growth of the “private cloud” market? In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Nara Rajagopalan, CEO of Accelerite, explored the challenges in deploying, managing, and getting adoption for a private cloud within an enterprise. What are the key differences between wh...
It’s 2016: buildings are smart, connected and the IoT is fundamentally altering how control and operating systems work and speak to each other. Platforms across the enterprise are networked via inexpensive sensors to collect massive amounts of data for analytics, information management, and insights that can be used to continuously improve operations. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Brian Chemel, Co-Founder and CTO of Digital Lumens, will explore: The benefits sensor-networked systems bring to ...
Large scale deployments present unique planning challenges, system commissioning hurdles between IT and OT and demand careful system hand-off orchestration. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jeff Smith, Senior Director and a founding member of Incenergy, will discuss some of the key tactics to ensure delivery success based on his experience of the last two years deploying Industrial IoT systems across four continents.
Much of IT terminology is often misused and misapplied. Modernization and transformation are two such terms. They are often used interchangeably even though they mean different things and have very different connotations. Indeed, it is somewhat safe to assume that in IT any transformative effort is likely to also have a modernizing effect, and thus, we can see these as levels of improvement efforts. However, many businesses are being led to believe if they don’t transform now they risk becoming ...
SYS-CON Events announced today the Enterprise IoT Bootcamp, being held November 1-2, 2016, in conjunction with 19th Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Combined with real-world scenarios and use cases, the Enterprise IoT Bootcamp is not just based on presentations but with hands-on demos and detailed walkthroughs. We will introduce you to a variety of real world use cases prototyped using Arduino, Raspberry Pi, BeagleBone, Spark, and Intel Edison. Y...
Identity is in everything and customers are looking to their providers to ensure the security of their identities, transactions and data. With the increased reliance on cloud-based services, service providers must build security and trust into their offerings, adding value to customers and improving the user experience. Making identity, security and privacy easy for customers provides a unique advantage over the competition.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Venafi, the Immune System for the Internet™ and the leading provider of Next Generation Trust Protection, will exhibit at @DevOpsSummit at 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Venafi is the Immune System for the Internet™ that protects the foundation of all cybersecurity – cryptographic keys and digital certificates – so they can’t be misused by bad guys in attacks...
Whether your IoT service is connecting cars, homes, appliances, wearable, cameras or other devices, one question hangs in the balance – how do you actually make money from this service? The ability to turn your IoT service into profit requires the ability to create a monetization strategy that is flexible, scalable and working for you in real-time. It must be a transparent, smoothly implemented strategy that all stakeholders – from customers to the board – will be able to understand and comprehe...
"There's a growing demand from users for things to be faster. When you think about all the transactions or interactions users will have with your product and everything that is between those transactions and interactions - what drives us at Catchpoint Systems is the idea to measure that and to analyze it," explained Leo Vasiliou, Director of Web Performance Engineering at Catchpoint Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York Ci...
"Tintri was started in 2008 with the express purpose of building a storage appliance that is ideal for virtualized environments. We support a lot of different hypervisor platforms from VMware to OpenStack to Hyper-V," explained Dan Florea, Director of Product Management at Tintri, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
For basic one-to-one voice or video calling solutions, WebRTC has proven to be a very powerful technology. Although WebRTC’s core functionality is to provide secure, real-time p2p media streaming, leveraging native platform features and server-side components brings up new communication capabilities for web and native mobile applications, allowing for advanced multi-user use cases such as video broadcasting, conferencing, and media recording.
IoT generates lots of temporal data. But how do you unlock its value? You need to discover patterns that are repeatable in vast quantities of data, understand their meaning, and implement scalable monitoring across multiple data streams in order to monetize the discoveries and insights. Motif discovery and deep learning platforms are emerging to visualize sensor data, to search for patterns and to build application that can monitor real time streams efficiently. In his session at @ThingsExpo, ...
There will be new vendors providing applications, middleware, and connected devices to support the thriving IoT ecosystem. This essentially means that electronic device manufacturers will also be in the software business. Many will be new to building embedded software or robust software. This creates an increased importance on software quality, particularly within the Industrial Internet of Things where business-critical applications are becoming dependent on products controlled by software. Qua...
SYS-CON Events has announced today that Roger Strukhoff has been named conference chair of Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo 2016 Silicon Valley. The 19th Cloud Expo and 6th @ThingsExpo will take place on November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. "The Internet of Things brings trillions of dollars of opportunity to developers and enterprise IT, no matter how you measure it," stated Roger Strukhoff. "More importantly, it leverages the power of devices and the Interne...
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to imp...
In addition to all the benefits, IoT is also bringing new kind of customer experience challenges - cars that unlock themselves, thermostats turning houses into saunas and baby video monitors broadcasting over the internet. This list can only increase because while IoT services should be intuitive and simple to use, the delivery ecosystem is a myriad of potential problems as IoT explodes complexity. So finding a performance issue is like finding the proverbial needle in the haystack.
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and shared the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the develo...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MangoApps will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MangoApps provides modern company intranets and team collaboration software, allowing workers to stay connected and productive from anywhere in the world and from any device.
The IETF draft standard for M2M certificates is a security solution specifically designed for the demanding needs of IoT/M2M applications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Brian Romansky, VP of Strategic Technology at TrustPoint Innovation, explained how M2M certificates can efficiently enable confidentiality, integrity, and authenticity on highly constrained devices.
SYS-CON Events announced today that LeaseWeb USA, a cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) provider, will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. LeaseWeb is one of the world's largest hosting brands. The company helps customers define, develop and deploy IT infrastructure tailored to their exact business needs, by combining various kinds cloud solutions.