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Discussions & Takeaways: Security Roundtable (Core Summit ‘17)

This post was written and published by Greg Nicastro (above), Core member, and former EVP Product Development and SaaS Operations, Veracode following the Security Roundtable at Underscore’s 2017 Core Summit.


How do current business to business offerings translate to more consumer-oriented security/privacy? In short, very poorly.

Given the recent Equifax breach, business to consumer security continues to become more and more important. In fact, one of the big short comings with B2B security offerings is usability, or lack there of — you have to be both a security geek and software engineer to use a lot of the tools out there. This doesn’t bode or translate well for B2C.

On a separate but related note, why should usability matter?

Shouldn’t software and security systems be getting more self-aware and ubiquitous over time? Shouldn’t security be built into the automated fabric of new-age applications and software as infrastructure? The general consensus was…not in our lifetimes! That said, Blade Runner dealt with even more complicated issues with technology and society — oh yeah, Blade Runner is fiction, I almost forgot — that’s how good Blade Runner 2049 was!

All agreed that breaking through the din of marketing messages at conferences like RSA is challenging for start-up security companies

It’s challenging for companies of any size actually — the larger companies have more money to throw at the problem. The hype actually contributes to the natural cynicism of both product/service users and decision makers. This group seemed to agree that solving real problems with a compelling product or service is the best “marketing” — that said, this group is a highly technical group with little patience for hyperbole.

Big data will be a big boon for business

All agreed that “big data” is going to be a boon for making both businesses and consumers more secure — that said, its application will have to make its way through Gartner’s height of inflated expectations and of disillusionment first.

Implications of Blockchain

One of our round table members is a super smart, hardcore crypto geek. His view on Blockchain was essentially — “meh”. It’s nothing more than a distributed database with an underwhelming cryptographic technology…so, what’s the big deal? There was an interesting discussion that centered around — it’s not really about the technology — the notion of disintermediation and improved security is a really big deal — even if the underlying tech is kind of ho-hum.

Again, the cool thing about these round tables is the diversity of people and perspective, the conversations can be challenging, productive and enlightening all at once! There was much more that I should have captured from our round table, but I got too into following the discussion instead of taking notes!