What Are The Odds?
Good security is a function of managing probabilities and possibilities. Sometimes, the job description of security professionals seems not unlike that of Las Vegas odds-makers. Every day, we have to decide what might (or might not) happen, and translate that likelihood into a quantitative value. There’s an art to assigning a real-world value to a possible outcome, which is a necessary process to determine how much it is worth to prevent that outcome. Compounding the problem: There are limited resources … and the stakes are huge.
“We’re spending millions of dollars trying to prevent something that’s never happened,” says Tom Leahy, director of public utilities for Virginia Beach, Va. “It’s a challenge to not become complacent, to not miss that little clue that could be something big.”
Fortunately, there are resources to help. For example, WaterISAC (Information Sharing and Analysis Center) is an online security resource for water utilities that pools information related to managing security threats.
Clearly, our only hope of succeeding is if we all work together.