Evolution of a Secure Company

I recently sat in on a milestone security review with one of our clients. Although I knew (at the level of doing what my phone told me) where to be and who we were meeting with, I had no recognition as to the voice emanating from the conference phone. After purposefully, so as not to look lost, glancing my way to my calendar, I understood I was at the right place and right time. But, I remained in doubt that I had wandered into a call with another security company.

Locking eyes with our Program Manager, I got a furrowed brow in response, so decided to just listen to the conversation and quickly wrote a note to myself: they hired a security person/CISO??? At this time, I pulled a few more synapses into the equation and joined the collective to follow where this new voice was taking us.

“We are reducing the number of … by 75%…and have a priority to… by the end of the year…” Ah, I know that voice, it’s their COO! She’s driving the meeting, and running the priorities, with a completely new tone and tempo. Wow. She is also evoking one of our fundamentals of being more secure by having less stuff to secure. The person I met at the beginning of the engagement, who wanted to “know what they didn’t know about their weaknesses,” is almost unrecognizable and jaw-droppingly in charge of their security direction. Being part of such a large leap in a client’s growth is the thing we live for at Deep Run.

I recently read Schneier’s “Data and Goliath”, and since, I have been enthralled with the analog between the current information challenges and the industrial revolution, and how he equates information to exhaust pollution. As so often happens, he surprised me with original vision. Just as we look back at the industrial revolution with modern wonderment we will someday look back at the unnecessary information we currently produce and marvel at how we were able to evolve, Bruce sketches.


Just as we look back at the industrial revolution with modern wonderment we will someday look back at the unnecessary information we currently produce and marvel at how we were able to evolve.


While I was absorbing the book, I had a Sixth Sense-like vision and superimposed a creepy “I see data ghosts everywhere…” As with horizons filled with smokestacks billowing black death, we today billow our own form of death that will look as strangely crude to our future.

I was almost run down by a modern smokestack this very morning when I got in the way of an urgent 10 wheeler on its way to shred data for a company. A huge truck. That comes to your business. To destroy data. Data in a form that is too voluminous for you to possibly destroy. There are fleets of these trucks.

An obvious, but important, point is that each document shredded represents stored data. The overarching security challenge is the stored data each sheet was produced from. If the physical data is such that a truck driver is involved, just imagine the volume you possess that really has no mass and has to use scientific notation to represent its size!

Our newly security-conscious client went on in our meeting to detail their action items and continued to show me that it’s not the technology missing in our industry, it’s the power of understanding. I left the meeting with a spring in my step, envisioning the butterfly effect of tearing down one smokestack at a time.

Take care,

Gary Merry, CEO