MES IT Security Board member Anh Tran believes it is time for midmarket leaders to put more focus on the information aspect of IT.
In today’s IT-centric world, midmarket leaders from all backgrounds tend to place more of an emphasis on the “T,” which stands for technology, rather than the “I,” information.
It’s easy for people in the industry to get hung up on the technology side and forget that IT leaders have the ability to process, protect and distribute information to a vast majority.
Anh Tran has been the information systems manager for the city of El Monte, California for over 10 years. Prior to this, Tran was the manager of IT services for Hathaway Sycamores Child and Family Services in Pasadena, California.
He thinks it is time for midsize enterprise IT leaders to start paying more attention to the information side of “information technology.”
“Personally, I think the way we approach how to handle security and protect data and information, we are always coming from the technology side. We always battle the bad guys with technology.”
Tran goes on to say, “We’re coming to understand that we need to provide more information to the end users. If you give them a brief understanding of how these things work and how they can protect themselves, then that will resonate with them a lot longer.”
He stresses the importance of educating and providing information to an organization’s executive management team, especially when it comes to issues revolving around security.
“For us as IT leaders, we must provide more information and reinforce that security is something that’s not only a product that we put in place to protect you.”
To get the senior leaders of a business to allocate resources to protecting their data, Tran says it is important for them to be able to connect with the information on a personal level.
“When [breaches] hit LinkedIn or Target, then you pay a little more attention. Most of your executive management has a LinkedIn account, and they have a credit card. So, when they go to Target, they would think twice before using their credit card.”
He thinks this new level of thinking has also affected how solution providers are selling to end users.
“To be honest, there’s no one out there to say, ‘Oh, we have the perfect solution for you. Nothing’s going to get through.’ Everybody’s going with the 99.9 percent [solution] because nobody can give you 100 percent protection.”
Tran believes the new MES IT Security event will help midmarket leaders realize everyone, regardless of what field they work in, faces the same type of security threats.
“We’re dealing with the same problems on a daily basis, and it’s really interesting and helpful to pick the brains of all my colleagues from different fields and apply that to my particular industry.”
Ultimately, Tran says attendees of the event will learn that they are not alone when it comes to security.
“When you deal with a security breach, sometimes you feel like you’re against the world and everybody’s attacking you. But, people have been through this, have experience with it and there’s help.”