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Tuesday, March 22nd, 2022

Zero Day Con 2022 – Key Highlights

Introduction

Zero Day Con took place in Dublin’s Convention Centre on March 10th. It saw an amazing lineup of over 25 speakers from around the globe. Touching on many aspects of cybersecurity from new technologies and new attack vectors to regulations that are reshaping cyber and business risks. Following the theme of ‘Supercharge Your Security’, experts discussed industry insights, top security technologies, and key priorities for organisations today. Many discussed the effect the pandemic has had on cybersecurity, the geopolitical tensions and cybercrime over the past 2 years.

Zero Day Con

The event kicked off with Ronan Murphy, Group CEO Smarttech247. Ronan spoke about the current cybersecurity landscape, the recent influx of supply chain attacks and how we can look at preventing these in the future. The rise of supply chain attacks is down to the increased interdependencies and complexities of digitised supply processes. This necessitates linking systems to implement the end-to-end supply chain forecasting, planning, ordering and shipping needed for minimum cost just in time supply processes. A big takeaway was his views and insights around the blurred lines between ransomware and data breaches, triple extortion and the Solar Winds hack being the “largest cybersecurity problem of the 21st century”.

Speakers

Eric Hussey

Aptiv representative, Eric Hussey, then spoke about how to secure your organization at the speed of innovation. Eric discussed the future of mobility and leading the transformation of technology. His take that success in the digital age is predicated on the ability to deliver new experiences and capabilities to customers quickly was interesting. Eric went through his own experiences, stating that “Speed is everything” and we need to keep pace with it. This speed has come at the cost of security and getting the right balance will be a struggle for many businesses in the future.  

Dr Adrian Cottrell

Dr Adrian Cottrell spoke on The Growing Threat to Defeating Cancer, the important work that the Institute of Cancer Research UK does and the role cybersecurity plays in the evolution of finding a cure. Cyber risk massively hinders scientists’ research and development in finding a cure and it was great to hear Adrian’s recommendations and advice on the role we can play to help research organisations like ICR in this growing threat to defeating cancer. It is everyone’s responsibility.

Chris Meenan and Seamus Lennon

The morning of presentations continued with Chris Meenan of IBM and Seamus Lennon of Threatlocker speaking about the importance of Zero Trust. A Zero Trust philosophy goes beyond a simple change to network design but a fundamental rethinking of how to implement security. For global businesses, the integration and digitisation of the supply chain can bring positive competitive advantages at the expense of exposure to risks directly due to security vulnerabilities in third-party supply chain members that are outside of their control. The question should not be if a business should move to a Zero Trust architecture but when will they complete the migration.

Laukik Suthar and Mark N. Russ

In an era of destructive geopolitical tensions, public/private collaboration has never been more important. The next presentation was from Laukik Suthar and Mark N. Russ of NCIS who spoke about the importance of integration of organisations systems to protect against hackers, how vital it is to report data breaches in understanding and preventing them in the future.

The Fundamental 3 C’s for any organization, from the NCIS representatives:

  • Capability
  • Capacity
  • Control

Desiree Lee, Lesley Kipling and Zac Warren

We had a few presentations in the late morning from Desiree Lee, Armis and Lesley Kipling, Microsoft and Zac Warren, Tanium where we learned the important role people play in cybersecurity, how empowering your people can make them more successful. Securing critical infrastructure, the rise of national cyber threats and the real cost of ransomware attacks were also discussed by the presenters.

Ransomware can cost so much more than the upfront ransom cost – other costs can include:

  • Geopolitical Reputation
  • Loss of Leadership Talent
  • Legal Liability
  • Loss of Life
  • Data Loss

Sascha Maier

Later, Sascha Maier, IWC Schaffhausen spoke about how it is all about the users becWe all know the important role technology plays but implementing a security culture in your organization is critical. Process, People and Technology must work together and the first step to do this is through Awareness! Sascha had some great insights into launching a successful campaign and the important role branding plays.

Panel

Our panel discussions kicked off in the afternoon with The Great Debate on Cyberwarfare. This featured Pat Lordan – An Garda Siochana, Donna Creaven – Irish Prison Service, Laukik Suthar – NCIS and Brian Johnson – Liberty University. The panellists discussed where we are with cybersecurity currently. This included nation-state attacks, guerrilla warfare, cryptocurrency and how we can limit the damage of cyberattacks. Also discussed was the effect the HSE attack had on cybersecurity in Ireland then and now and the effects of underreporting attacks will have on an organisation’s ability to defend against similar attacks in the future.

The next panel discussion was Zero Trust: From digital identity to managing supply chain risks. This featured Allan Cahill – Aptiv, Donnie Macclean – Sitecore, Ian Brennan – ASL Aviation. The panelists discussed Zero trust in the software supply chain (SaaS / Cloud), BYOD and how the concept of zero trust can be applied to Data Protection.

The final Panel Discussion of the day – The power of collective intelligence in cybersecurity. This comprised of Raluca Saceanu – Smarttech247, Niamh Muldoon – Fenergo, Paul Garvey – IBM & Lesley Kipling – Microsoft. The experts discussed the importance of collective and human intelligence and bringing people together, the importance of active learning and the diverse teams we will need for the future.

The day also hosted a Breakout panel discussion, Fundraising for Startups and a number of AI technical breakout sessions. The sessions featured AI advances in machine learning and feature stores. Our experts discussed what the future holds for deep tech applications, ML Ops and Automating Security Design in the cloud.

Summary

Zero Day Con 2022 featured many global representatives from many of the worlds leading organisations and brought to light some major issues that the cybersecurity sector will face in the future as well as how past events and attacks have shaped the cybersecurity landscape for years to come. You can catch all of the speakers presentations from the day on the Zero Day Con Youtube channel now.

It was great to have Zero Day Con back on stage at Dublin’s Convention Centre this year as one of the first in-person cybersecurity events of the year. There was a lot discussed by our brilliant lineup of guests who we thank very much for their participation as well as all of our sponsors for their support and we will return next year for Zero Day Con 2023.

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