The election's effect on the future of cybersecurity and privacy

Dave Nelson, CISSP, is president and CEO at Integrity.

The 2016 presidential election will have long-lasting implications for cybersecurity and information privacy. While Congress has its hands full debating adoption of or updates to legislation, such as updates to the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, the president will be influencing cybersecurity from other directions.

As commander in chief, the next president will provide significant direction to the Department of Defense and the national intelligence community in how to engage America’s enemies in cyberwarfare. Will America continue to develop a cyberwarfare capability within the Defense Department? What will the rules of engagement be during cyberattacks against information systems used by the U.S. military, government agencies or critical infrastructure providers? Should the U.S. unleash a fully offensive and pre-emptive cyber strike in an attempt to deter or prevent a war in the physical world? Are civilian cyber targets such as manufacturing, banking and critical infrastructure information systems fair game in order to attempt to prevent the need to send our troops into the field? 

The next president will also name at least one new justice to the Supreme Court, possibly more. How will those justices view privacy in an electronic world? Will they work to limit the types of information that can be collected by the public and private sectors? Will they work to ensure the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution is applied to the new digital world we live in? Will the U.S. finally begin to be a leader in the digital privacy fight instead of following in the footsteps of Europe, Canada and even to some degree Russia?

While answers to these questions may not be looming as large as how to address health care, Social Security, the economy or gun control, they are nonetheless critical to the future of this great republic. We are just now beginning to see how decisions we made just 10 to 15 years ago are impacting cybersecurity and privacy of individuals and organizations. With the speed of technology innovation and adoption by governments, corporations and individuals, we can no longer sit on the sidelines and “wait to see how things play out.” Significant discussions must be had and decisions made on how we, as the leaders of the free world, view information security and privacy. Elected officials at all levels, including the local city leaders and school boards, are impacting your digital world and that of future generations.  So I encourage you to ask candidates questions on their stance on information security and use that information to help you decide who to cast a ballot for this November.

Email: dave.nelson@integritysrc.comDave-Nelson-2015-resized

Twitter: @integritySRC | @integrityCEO


Opening the door to social networking

Cory W. Sharp is an intern architect at FEH Design in Des Moines and the current president of the Young Professionals Connection. 

It’s nerve-wracking stepping into the unknown. Unfamiliar with a place that is completely full of individuals you have never met before but have to introduce yourself to, and wanting to make a great first impression. The downside to social networking is having to step outside of your comfort zone and introduce yourself to the unknown. However, the upside is endless. Countless opportunities are waiting as soon as you open the door to social networking. So get ready to open that door! 


Relax. Get comfortable with the idea that there’s no perfect way to go about it, but that the people inside are just like you. Being uncomfortable is a good thing. It helps you grow, and gives you confidence when confronting that anxiety again.

Ask questions. When you get nervous, just ask about them -- the other people. Get to know the other person better. Not only will it take the spotlight off of you, but the person you’re trying to connect with will be much more interested in you and your business once you have shown interested in them.

Don’t talk about your job titles and the responsibilities that come along with it. There might be hundreds of individuals at an event, and the best way to stand out from the crowd is to not bore people by listing off your resume. People tend to gloss over job titles and responsibilities as easily as they might forget your name.

A good friend of mine, Danny Beyer, gave me a great piece of advice in saying, “Ask them what they are passionate about.” It sounds a bit personal, but it has worked countless times in my experience. People like talking about things they care about, and oftentimes it may not be their job. Don’t let yourself become “what’s his/her name.” Instead, when it’s your turn, talk about what you are passionate about and how those passions motivate you. Emotions resonate with individuals more than words do. When you mix emotions such as passion to your career, you will be well remembered. Take it from someone who is usually remembered as the young architect who enjoys talking transit and eats way too many tacos.

Open the door, be yourself, and success will follow. 


Email Cory at: 

Why strategic planning works

Joe Benesh is a senior architect with Shive-Hattery and president and CEO of the Ingenuity Company, a strategic planning, diagramming, framework development and design thinking consulting firm.

In Dan Ariely's book "Predictably Irrational," there is a chapter called “Why a 50-cent aspirin can do what a penny aspirin can’t.” If you haven’t read this book, you should. It calls into question a lot of the decisions we make and the root causes behind why we make them.

In many respects, planning is about developing a set of possible solutions. It isn’t our job to implement these solutions, but rather to present clients with frameworks for success and increases in capacity.

So, what of the 50-cent aspirin? The reason I began this post with that is because sometimes clients search for the 50-cent solution when the penny solution will do.

But isn’t the 50-cent solution always going to be better? The answer is no. I’m not talking about the actual price of the strategic planning services or even the cost of the implementation of the solution – what I am referring to lies in the amount of complexity in the solution framework presented as a result of the planning process. Irrationality-of-rationalism

It is easy to get caught up in a solution that seems to have many bells and whistles. A 50-cent solution. But is that what you need? Does it solve the core problem, make the improvement(s), or build capacity in a way that meets the baseline expectations? Or is it more bells and whistles than a framework for solutions? Activities and actions solving fringe issues rather than aimed at the core or critical?

Strategic planning works because it offers an opportunity for organizations to build a long-term vision for what they wish to accomplish. If this long-term vision is overwrought with complexity, or constructed around a framework that is not built on solid user data or analytics, then what appears to be a well-developed plan will disintegrate during the implementation phase.

We have a tendency to naturally assume that if something is more complex or more expensive, then it must be better. I’ve found that almost universally the opposite is true.

When a plan is too complex, it will seem too hard for stakeholders to get traction on any single area, which may cause a cascading effect on the entire plan, causing it to fail. During the planning phase, this complexity may have felt good by virtue of sheer volume of information – safety in numbers of a sort. But if you move into the tactical portion of the planning phase without properly winnowing, filtering and/or phasing this earlier raw data, the volume of information will work against successful implementation.

Successful strategic planning balances complexity with relativism and practicality. Strategic planning works because it allows these three ingredients to mix, based on the needs of the individual or organization. When this mix is optimized, the penny solution will feel like a 50-cent solution, because you will find success in implementation. If your headache only needs a penny aspirin, why waste the other 49 cents?

 Please contact me for more information:Joe _Benesh_2011

 For updates on strategy and all our latest content, please follow:



This site is intended for informational and conversational purposes, not to provide specific legal, investment, or tax advice.  Articles and opinions posted here are those of the author(s). Links to and from other sites are for informational purposes and are not an endorsement by this site’s sponsor.