Former White House Cybersecurity Chief Named President of Cyber Threat Alliance

In the race to evolve and combat ever-growing cyber security threats, the Cyber Threat Alliance made a major announcement at the RSA Conference in San Francisco this week, naming Michael Daniel as the organization’s first president and its formal incorporation as a not-for-profit entity.

The nonprofit also announced it was adding Check Point Software Technologies and Cisco to join its founding members Fortinet, Intel Security, Palo Alto Networks, and Symantec. The CTA incorporated as a nonprofit in January and named Daniel to the leading role this month. Daniel is the former Special Assistant to the President and Cybersecurity Coordinator for the White House. The current board of the CTA includes the CEOs and senior leadership of the six founding companies.

Now qualifying itself as a nonprofit, CTA’s purpose is to share threat information in order to improve defenses against cyber adversaries across member organizations and protect customers; to advance the cybersecurity of critical IT infrastructures; and to increase the security, availability, integrity and efficiency of information systems.

As its first order of business as a standalone nonprofit, CTA is developing and deploying an automated threat intelligence-sharing platform that enables members to integrate real-time, actionable intelligence into their products to better protect global customers.

“Our greatest weapon in the defense against cyber attackers is the vast power of our combined data and insights,” said Greg Clark, CEO of Symantec in a statement. “Possessing one of the world’s largest pools of treat data carries significant responsibility, and the CTA provides us with an important coordinating mechanism to enable rapid sharing of that threat intelligence with global businesses. In today’s hyper-connected world, a single piece of malware could cripple global economies or even put lives in danger. The technology investments we’re making as members of the alliance aims to strengthen the protection of people everywhere.”

The presence of tech enterprises collaborating to battle a common enemy is growing, as earlier this month six tech giants – including AT&T, IBM, Nokia, Palo Alto, Symantec, and Trustonic – announced the formation of the IoT Cybersecurity Alliance, taking a stand against constant threats pounding the Internet of Things space.

“The explosive growth in the number of IoT devices is only expected to continue; therefore, so must the associated cybersecurity protections,” said Mo Katibeh, AT&T senior vice president of Advanced Solutions in the statement. “Today’s business are connecting devices ranging from robots on factory floors to pacemakers and refrigerators. Helping these organizations stay protected requires innovation across the whole IoT ecosystem to enable sustainable growth.”

As previously reported by Enterprise Mobility Exchange, its expected there will be 20 billion "things" connected to the Internet by the year 2020, while some 5.5 million devices were being connected daily in 2016, according to Gartner Research. By the end of 2014, there were just 3.8 billion connected devices total. 

Mobile security is the topic of Enterprise Mobility Exchange’s upcoming Security West event in Phoenix, Arizona, where 40 CIOs, CISOs, VPs, Heads and Directors of IT will gather for an intense two-day strategy meeting with speakers and networking opportunities with solution providers.

Security West will feature opening keynote speaker Nick Savage, Assistant Acting Special Agent in Charge of Cybersecurity for the FBI, as well as Jamal Hartenstein, Data Privacy and Cyber Security attorney. Savage will take a look at defending the attack surface, establishing an effective defense and implementing an information assurance framework to secure the enterprise’s endpoints. The legal aspect of a breach will be tackled, as Hartenstein addresses who’s liable when it comes to security issues.

Derek Wheeler, the Assistant Director of Cybersecurity for the State of Maryland will also speak on how to secure tens of thousands of mobile devices across his public enterprise.

To learn more about the Exchange format and how it works, visit the Security West Coast site here.

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