Tales from the Road: RSA 2018

Lead Security Engineer
A few main themes emerged from this year’s RSA Conference. Let’s discuss. 

Cooperation – “Can’t We All Just Get Along?”

From the keynote talks down to the convention floor there was an overwhelming sense of urgency around cooperation and information sharing among security companies. 
Microsoft outlined the “Cybersecurity Tech Accord” which brings together 33 of the top cyber security companies and pushes for information sharing and collective action.


The elephant in the room throughout most presentations was the impending GDPR regulations. An alliance has popped up to address these compliance challenges, led by companies like OneTrust, TrustArc, and Protiviti.

While how seriously a company will be affected by GDPR varies widely, not taking action is no longer an option.

Now more than ever investments must be made to identity and classify all data. If you don’t know where your data resides it is impossible to verify compliance with GDPR regulations.

It’s All About the Data Baby

GDPR requirements have only exasperated a problem that has been around forever: protecting the data is the most important job of any security practitioner. As we have seen the concern shift from “I hope I don’t get breached” to “it isn’t if I get breached, it is when”, we have finally landed on, “it isn’t when I get breached, it is how often.”

In order to be successful at true data security, you must be able to validate the full life-cycle of data as it flows through your organization. That will mean completely different things to different companies, but at its core the data must be tracked and protected from endpoint to server to third-parties to cloud applications. Far too often companies simply do not know where all of their data resides. CASBs made a large splash in 2017 (a theme which continued at RSAC 2018) in large part to their ability to extend data visibility into cloud applications. This theme will only continue to grow through 2018.

Cryptographers Panel: Blockchain Is A Fad?

The highly anticipated Cryptographers Panel put some of the largest names in Crypto (including two of the three founders of the RSA algorithm) on stage to discuss current trends.

The main question on everyone’s minds was blockchain. The panel’s unanimous position on blockchain was simple: it does not scale for enterprise purposes and it is inelegant at best; unsustainable at worse.

While this panel was not for the faint of heart considering the joint IQ’s of the panelists would put Sheldon Cooper to shame, the panel highlighted the criticality of encryption across all enterprise applications and data systems. While encryption at rest usually has the box checked because of compliance requirements, more often than not companies have not done the required work to get their arms around encryption in motion or enterprise class key management.

All in all, RSA 2018 was an educational and exciting week of panels, presentations, and conversation with OEMs and customers.

To learn more about ePlus, our workshops and our security solutions, visit www.eplus.com/security or contact me directly at eplus-security@eplus.com.


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