Alion’s Mark Ives Discusses Cybersecurity Training

Alion’s Mark Ives spoke with ExecutiveBiz about his take on cybersecurity training:

“So far, Alion’s cybersecurity training has focused on internal personnel; those with IT backgrounds and basic network experience are eligible for training. And, while no formalized benchmarks exist (yet), Ives, along with Alion Deputy CIO Jerome Fath, the principal architect of the program, is pleased with preliminary findings. “The result, so far, has been a safe enterprise with numerous thwarted critical attacks, ” Ives said.

Ives also aims to broaden the training’s reach.  “We hope to open up the training to government and commercial personnel within the next few months, ” he said.

Along with Alion’s cyber training, Ives’ team has “supercharged” existing technologies: most notably sandbox, honeypot, intrusion detection system (IDS) and intrusion protection system (IPS). “Those things are what comprise your cyber defense force of today and tomorrow, ” he said.

Meanwhile, for CIOs looking to implement similar training within their own organizations, Ives, who’s served as Alion CIO for the past nine years, has some key advice. “Make sure your cyber warriors (and trainees) understand the business environments — and the systems — most ripe for attack, ” he said. “Ensure, ” he added, “that your attack response methods include all IT functions and key business functions, from start to finish.”

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