Former Anthem CIO Admits a Lack of Awareness Training

An article review.

Well, duh . . . .


By now we’ve all read the headlines associated with the recent Anthem Insurance data breach. After all, this incident will go down in the record books as being the third largest data breach to date, at least with regard to the number of records stolen.

While that in and of itself is newsworthy, a headline that you probably haven’t seen comes from a former CIO of Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield. An article published by Insurance Networking News highlights an alarming admission by Joseph Smith, the Former Anthem Executive.

Even though Smith left his post last year, he speculates that the attack vector used within the Anthem attack was to exploit the company’s own employees and their lack of awareness. “It’s always unintentional or innocent, but your biggest risk is your own employees,” Smith said.

Honestly, the lack of awareness isn’t a new concept in the world of Information Security, but this article is a glaring example of just how costly that lack of awareness can be. That’s why infotex has been preaching the importance of Awareness Training to our Clients since our inception in 2000.  It was in 2001 that we started pointing out how much more secure America was the day after September 11th than we were the day before.  And we ended up with this slogan:

Awareness is 9/11ths of the battle!

So when we read that the former CIO admits to a lack of awareness training, we feel that’s like a Sumo Wrestler admitting that he overeats from time to time.  And let’s not start fooling ourselves by creating “to-do’s” we can cross off the list and thereby feel satisfied that we have “done the awareness thing.”  Awareness is not something that is “achieved.”  We all lack awareness . . . we just hope that we’re aware of the right things, at the right time.

And thus the risk assessment . . . .

If you’d like to read more on the implications of the Anthem breach, check out The Opposite of Fear where Dan reveals the main takeaway from the Anthem breach in the latest installment of Dan’s New leaf.

Click Here To Read the Full Article

The above is what we call an “Article Review.” It is part of our attempt to help our readers find excellent reading materials to back up important technology risk management concepts. We try not to include articles that are merely news or additional news about mainstream issues. Instead, we try to highlight articles that our “typical clients” should be sure to read, or that are about concepts “outside the mainstream media.” infotex does not intend to endorse views represented by the writers of the articles we review, nor do we try to keep our Clients aware of EVERYTHING. For example, if a particular story concept is being reported upon in many different media sources, infotex usually chooses to ignore the story concept altogether, unless we can find a “unique take” on the story concept.

Original article by Nathan Golia of Insurance Networking News.


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