Cloud Computing

Meet the Cybersecurity Defender of 2024 for EMEA

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Yearly, Cisco selects leaders who exemplify the eagerness, tenacity, and data required to be a cybersecurity defender. We’re delighted to announce the Cybersecurity Defender of 2024 for the EMEA area: Stuart Perkins, Operations Chief for the Cyber Prevents staff at Vodafone.

From Networks to Cybersecurity

A graduate of London College, Stuart’s profession started on the Royal Air Pressure as an Engineering Officer. After serving, Stuart moved to the non-public sector, the place he specialised in managing totally different applied sciences and technical groups. At Vodafone, a number one telecommunications firm headquartered in the UK, Stuart is liable for the Community and Telco Platforms that present safety on the perimeter of the Vodafone property. Stuart leads a staff of 100 staff throughout Europe and India and is the lead for Operational Finest Follow throughout the Cyber Stop staff.

“You’re on the aspect of doing the suitable factor.”
– Stuart Perkins.

With a background in constructing and configuring networks and understanding and securing these networks, Stuart has been fascinated by exploring the massive quantity of knowledge accessible in cybersecurity. Discovering out extra about risk actors and what they’re doing via the a number of instruments he makes use of, piques Stuart’s curiosity. Nonetheless, what issues most to Stuart about cybersecurity is that “you’re on the aspect of doing the suitable factor, making a distinction, and stopping folks with malevolent intent from being profitable,” he stated.

The community by no means lies.

Stuart is devoted to including worth and bettering experiences for colleagues and clients who depend on Vodafone to conduct enterprise securely. Stuart’s staff manages to safe tens of 1000’s of gadgets internally and lots of thousand gadgets inside their enterprise area. On condition that Vodafone is thwarting tens to a whole lot of tens of millions of threats relying on the day, Stuart is energized by his collaboration with Cisco and with the ability to analyze knowledge to get detailed perception into risk actors.

“Utilizing the MITRE assault Framework, we’ve truly been capable of map from Cisco’s intelligence what these varied assaults try to do and the place they match into the framework,” he stated. Stuart finds this work “distinctive and groundbreaking” for each Vodafone and Cisco in that “we’re utilizing the perimeter of our infrastructure as a sensor to grasp what individuals are attempting to do in opposition to us and what their goals are and begin to take a look at areas the place we have to bolster the defenses.”

Given Stuart’s community background, what excites him about partnering with Cisco is Cisco’s historical past of community functionality. In a latest name with Cisco colleagues, an concept that notably struck Stuart was that the community by no means lies. “Cisco is giving me perception to see the visitors flows throughout our infrastructure. Utilizing the MITRE mapping helps us rapidly assess and act on any alerts, while our blocking actions are nice, we all know that some cyber assaults might be profitable. Our mission is to guard clients, colleagues, and society from this kind of felony exercise,” he stated.

Stuart’s dedication to infrastructure safety is mirrored in Vodafone’s use of the MITRE ATT&CK framework and Cisco Safety options. By leveraging these instruments, Vodafone is ready to block tens of tens of millions of malicious makes an attempt every day. This degree of safety effectiveness protects Vodafone’s programs and enhances the client expertise by making certain that points are handled promptly.

Empowering the following era of cybersecurity defenders

Stuart’s ardour for his work extends to empowering his staff members to develop into the following era of cybersecurity defenders. As there’s a important cohort of early-in-career contributors beginning their careers at Vodafone, it’s essential to Stuart that his staff have ample coaching alternatives and fascinating issues to work on in each community tooling and reporting. The staff can be enthusiastic about an upcoming Cyber Vary coaching with Cisco Talos’s Risk Intelligence staff.

One thing Stuart is proudest of is the transformation of his staff changing into extra proactive about their platforms and extra curious concerning the data gleaned from alerts. This focus and collaboration have led to much less time on calls due to the staff’s due diligence.

The staff of colleagues at Vodafone who’ve labored carefully with Stuart are so happy with this achievement, they assume it’s very effectively deserved. His mission focus and the expertise he makes use of to educate others are so essential to us.

Congratulations, Stuart! All of us profit out of your contributions to the sector.

Keen about cybersecurity?

If you happen to, too, are making a distinction in cybersecurity with Cisco, be thought-about for our subsequent Cybersecurity Defender of the 12 months award.

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