October is “National Cyber Security Awareness Month”, and as cybersecurity is my thing, I decided to take a couple days and do a comparative between the standards Deep Run uses for its methodologies and tool offerings.

To that end, I find myself firmly ensconced in the Deep Run headquarters and on my desk, the far left, are the HIPPA standards, to the right of that is PCI and to the right of that is NIST 800-30, 37,39… then my keyboard/monitor and to my right is a 2 inch deep SOX standard. I’m actually a fan of all of these and feel they all have real value.

While I frantically draw “Beautiful Mind” vectors between them, Pandora plants, “We didn’t start the fire, it was always burning…” into my earbuds and Billy Joel is now in a runaway neural loop, with no end in sight.

Reading these standards and all of their well-placed guidance, I’m reminded of my first day of T-ball:

I received a squeeze on the shoulder, and sage guidance, by the CEO of the family (Dad), as to what his expectations were with this situation. But all I can think of is, “Wish I would have gone when mom told me to…”, I then begin the hallowed trek where I know at my journeys end I will be the star in the CEO’s eye, the son that validated his genome and the vanquisher of the sport! Imagination was never a problem for me.  

I fit the XL helmet on my S head and take a bat from my coach who is also giving me dire direction about “chokinguponthebatandstandwithmyfeetsomehow”, and out to the field I go for the first time, the Ump (Steve’s dad), tells me where to stand and the air fills with various octaves of shouted guidance. Each professional player in the stands telling me something similar, but at a different pitch and coming at me from a different direction. I am now in synapses overload and still have that “mom’s guidance I ignored, issue”, I take a deep breath and push the bat through the opaque airwaves of guidance and expectations to make contact with the ball. With its launch comes a level 11 shockwave of instruction and urgent direction to the point that I simply do not have a brain of my own anymore, somewhere in the din I hear, “run!”, and it connected with something that made my legs move. Off to 3rd base I ran, faster than some of the sound, but not faster than my coach who is suddenly beside me with 3X eyes and a finger pointing across the diamond and something about the CEO and 1st base comes to mind, so with a hard right and a slight trip across the pitcher’s mound, I found myself on 1st. And out.

As a CEO, CIO, CFO, team member, you are forever at bat in the security challenge. There is guidance, standards and experts who are shouting through the chain link, but the bat is in your hands and the future is yours. The key is to not just follow your respective standard, but to expand and grow outside of it. No one can run your bases for you; you need to invest in yourself and your team.

“You are forever at bat in the security challenge.”

If there is one thing that Deep Run strives for, it is to learn from each of these standards and determine how we can use this knowledge to help our customers be secure.

The fire was started before us, but we own the flame. It is our efforts that will determine the fate of entire enterprises, legacies, and careers.

Happy Securetober!

– Gary Merry, CEO