Chats On The Clouds To InfoSec Europe 2019 | Marketing Security to the Board & Execs | With Killian Faughnan, Group CISO, William Hill

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By Sean Martin | Co-host Marco Ciappelli

It has become an ITSPmagazine tradition to start our InfoSec Europe Conference coverage with what we call Chats On The Clouds To InfoSec Europe. We connect with conference keynote speakers, presenters, panelists and organizers to start the conversation way before anyone else does.

During these conversations, we get a sneak peek into what they are planning to share at the conference as well as a glimpse into their backgrounds and some additional insight on the topics they will discuss.


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Killian Faughnan is the Group CISO at William Hill where he is responsible for securing a business comprised of 16,000 people across 12 countries. In his role as group CISO, it means he has responsibility for governance/risk/compliance, security engineering, security platforms, security operations, and security response. Killian shares with us that keeping ahead of the targeted attacks is top-of-mind for him with the most significant threats facing companies like his include distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks and credential stuffing attacks.

It was great to get this insight into how Killian looks at cybersecurity as a whole, but the purpose for our chat today is to dig into the lightning talk he will be giving during InfoSec Europe in London as part of a 4-part keynote session titled Building Brand Infosec: Engaging Employees to Drive Secure Behaviour.

The four lightning talks are:

  • Lightning Talk 1: Top Tips on How to Increase Engagement in Information Security – an Internal Comms Case Study

  • Lightning Talk 2: Case Study: Implementing an Engaging Behavioural Change Programme

  • Lightning Talk 3: Case Study: How to Implement a Successful Cyber Champion Programme

  • Lightning Talk 4: Marketing Security to the Board & Execs


Killian's fellow panelists include:

  • Linda McCormack, Head of Internal Communications, Anglian Water Services

  • Flavius Plesu, Former CISO, Bank of Ireland UK

  • Paula Kershaw, CISO, Europe & UK, HSBC

The four talks, which are to be presented as a single keynote moderated by Michael Hill, Deputy Editor at Infosecurity Magazine, will drive communications up and down the stack within the organization, looking at the role of security awareness and responsibility for all within the organization.

Killian will be sharing his insights in Talk 4 — Marketing Security to the Board & Execs, where he will give the audience some tips on how to sell InfoSec to the executive staff and the board of directors. Killian shared with us that selling InfoSec to internal stakeholders is a marketers nightmare — as a CISO you find that you have to market to a very diverse group of people from management to the executive staff to the board via a single marketing campaign. The challenge is bringing home a single message across the board for all to understand.

Marketing security is as much about culture and people as it is about hard stats and KPIs.
— Killian Faughnan, Group CISO, William Hill

The product you are selling is not just a set of security controls, and risk management procedures — the executive team and the board need to be sold on the confidence that you can do what you are supposed to do in your role; they need to know they can trust you.

According to Killian, it often comes down to personality as well; you need to know with whom you are speaking, and they need to be comfortable with who they hear from in return.

Listen in to hear a ton more from Killian as he prepares us for some great conversations next week.


About Killian Faughnan
Group CISO, William Hill

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Killian joined William Hill in January 2019 as the Group CISO responsible for security governance and technology for all William Hill brands in Europe and the US.

Prior to joining William Hill he was CISO at GTT and Interoute, both in the telecoms industry, and The Rank Group, a UK gaming/gambling operator.

He has established himself as a leader in the area of security while understanding and supporting commercial business concerns in the companies he has worked in. Along with professional certifications he also has an MSc in Security & Forensics and an MBA.

Find Killian on LinkedIn