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Playbook: Your First 100 Days as a vCISO

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Dec 11, 2023The Hacker NewsvCISO / Cybersecurity

vCISO

In an increasingly digital world, no organization is spared from cyber threats. Yet, not every organization has the luxury of hiring a full-time, in-house CISO. This gap in cybersecurity leadership is where you, as a vCISO, come in. You are the person who will establish, develop, and solidify the organization’s cybersecurity infrastructure, blending strategic guidance with actionable cybersecurity services.

As an organizational leader, you will be required to navigate professional duties, business needs, diverse organizational personas and leadership demands. Your success relies on your ability to build trust and establish yourself as a strategic decision-maker that can protect the organization.

As such, your first 100 days in a new organization are key to your success. They will lay the groundwork for your long-term achievements. To aid you in this critical phase, we introduce a comprehensive guide: a five-step, 100-day action plan, “Your First 100 Days as a vCISO – 5 Steps to Success”.

The playbook was developed based on the collective wisdom and experience of industry leaders Cynomi and PowerPSA, following their extensive work with hundreds of vCISOs across businesses of all sizes.

The playbook covers:

  • vCISO goals
  • Pitfalls to avoid
  • 5 phases: Research, Understand, Prioritize, Execute, Report
  • Key activities for each phase

Some example activities include:

  • Research (Days 0-30): Meeting stakeholders and management, meeting the IT/security team, reviewing past security incidents and responses
  • Understand (Days 0-45): Conducting a security risk assessment, showing the current security posture and gaps to the management, identifying short-term and long-term needs
  • Prioritize (Days 15-60): Defining short, mid and long-term goals, creating a remediation/work plan based on those goals, planning budgets and resources
  • Execute (Days 30-80): Communicating the plan to all stakeholders, implementing automated systems that can deliver low hanging fruit, setting a cadence for external scanning and reporting
  • Report (Days 45-100): Measuring success, communicating progress at least once a month, integrating reporting into your overall plan

This guide is your practical handbook when starting out at a new organization or for leveling up your game with existing clients. Follow the steps and set yourself up for success throughout your challenging, yet rewarding, tenure as a vCISO. Get the playbook.

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