Manoj Bhatt

Manoj Bhatt

Head of Cyber Security Advisory and Consulting at Telstra Purple EMEA

Manoj Bhatt, Head of Cyber Security Advisory and Consulting at Telstra Purple EMEA, discusses the challenge of cyber security amidst COVID-19...

Manoj Bhatt, Head of Cyber Security Advisory and Consulting at Telstra Purple EMEA, has seen first hand the increased focus on risk management and cyber resilience in response to the crisis.

“The coronavirus has demonstrated the importance of cyber resilience as businesses move to remote working whilst ensuring they do so securely,” says Bhatt. “Cyber security isn’t just a concern for the security or IT department, and those organisations that already have a strong, ingrained security culture that is business wide, will weather the storm best.”

As part of his role as fronting Telstra Purple EMEA’s cyber security advisory and consulting capabilities for EMEA, Bhatt works with a range of customers across several different sectors. Bhatt is focused around embedding cyber security into the digital agenda and on the user and customer experience aspects of cyber security.

Bhatt also sits on the advisory board of ClubCISO. Explaining the community’s benefits he states: “One of the things we really like about ClubCISO is that it’s a community of CISOs for CISOs – that’s the key thing. It’s a peer group to share thought leadership and provides a platform to talk to one another about the latest cyber security threats and issues, and also to share best practices.”

Each year, ClubCISO surveys the community in a live vote to get a collective view of the current security landscape, and understand the contemporary issues faced by security specialists. The latest ClubCISO Information Security Maturity Report was released in May 2020. This year’s Live Vote, which was held virtually for the first time due to the COVID-19 outbreak, drew over 100 CISO respondents.

The coronavirus pandemic has caused disruption in industries worldwide. Uncontrollable circumstances such as these highlight the importance of adopting a ‘future state’ mindset, reassessing business needs now and in the future, and evaluating what kinds of technologies and implementations can support these. The priority in the current environment is supporting home working and guarding against cyber threats.

Bhatt sums up the current situation and issues a warning: “We're certainly seeing a big drive from a number of vendors talking about how their security products are going to be ‘the silver bullet’, but it’s impossible to determine a solution without a proper assessment and understanding of business needs first.

“You must first understand what already exists within your organisation, and what the current technology set up is, before you can consider what the best technologies for the job are. If you bring this thinking together, it makes you more resilient against threats, whether that be COVID-19 or an out-of-the-blue cyber attack. It’s important to join the dots and take a holistic perspective.”

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