Leadership & Executive Communication , Training & Security Leadership , Video

How Positive Cyber Messaging Helps Connect With the C-Suite

Accenture's William Beer on Strategies to Bridge the Cybersecurity, C-Suite Gap
William Beer, managing director, financial services, Accenture

Cybersecurity is a critical concern for organizations of all sizes these days, and the responsibility for promoting it often falls on the CISO. But there's often a major disconnect between the CISO and the rest of the C-suite. William Beer, managing director for financial services at Accenture, discussed the challenges CISOs face and strategies to bridge the gap.

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Seventy-five percent of CEOs lack confidence in their organization's cybersecurity programs, Beer said, which means the cybersecurity industry needs to educate C-suite members who are unfamiliar with handling cyber-related matters. Organizations must engage in continuous horizon-scanning workshops and consider potential threats from various angles, including political, legal, economic, social, technological and environmental perspectives. By adopting a proactive approach to risk assessment and management, organizations can stay ahead of emerging threats.

"Part of the problem is that a lot of CEOs are not savvy when it comes to cyber. They feel as if they're out of their comfort zone," Beer said. "The cyber industry has to recognize that and think about how to provide more support to the C-suite members, and how do we help support them in day-to-day conversations with their board or stockholders when it comes to cyber-related matters."

In this video interview with Information Security Media Group at ISMG's Financial Services Summit 2023, Beer also discussed:

  • Why cybersecurity should not be perceived in terms of fear, uncertainty and doubt;
  • How to quantify ROI in cybersecurity initiatives;
  • Why cybersecurity programs need to shift from reactive to proactive.

Beer, who has more than 30 years of experience across the security domain, is responsible for exploring innovative new approaches at Accenture to help protect the business from complex and unpredictable cyberthreats.

About the Author

Anna Delaney

Anna Delaney

Director, ISMG Productions

An experienced broadcast journalist, Delaney conducts interviews with senior cybersecurity leaders around the world. Previously, she was editor-in-chief of the website for The European Information Security Summit, or TEISS. Earlier, she worked at Levant TV and Resonance FM and served as a researcher at the BBC and ITV in their documentary and factual TV departments.

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