The C Suite approach to Cyber Survivability

Can we keep the bad guys out of our networks? – “NO”, Says the former Senior Policy & Strategy Advisor for the US Department of Defense, Mr. Anthony Bargar

Instead we must shift our strategies to Cyber ‘Resilience’ and Cyber ‘Survivability’, to ensure that our most essential business functions can continue in a trusted way despite operating in a hostile information and communications technologies (ICT) battle zone some call “the internet”.

Anthony Bargar has spent a better part of his career in Washington DC, in the US Intelligence Community, and Department of Defense where he started out as a white-hat hacker hacking into military intelligence command and control (C2) systems to demonstrate weaknesses and design more secure architectures, and has since worked on sensitive counter-espionage cases to gather digital evidence to identify and prosecute spies. He quickly moved up the ladder eventually landing at the US Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) where he supported the Department’s Chief Information Officer (CIO), and was assigned to National Security Council where he helped the White House re-write the US Cyber Strategy. Mr. Bargar left government service in 2010 and went to Wall Street, where he was the chief consultant to the NASDAQ OMX and helped safeguard the high speed trading networks from Nation state level hackers, he and his team were instrumental in assessing and enhancing NASDAQ’s security program.

Asked about keeping the bad guys out, Anthony said, “We cant afford to protect everything, our networks are getting more complex and the adversary has to spend very little in developing an attack, while the cost of defense can be a factor of 10 if not more”, he went on to tell us, “The industry has led us to acquire ‘blinky box’ syndrome, that is throwing too much technology at the problem – organizations need to look within and first think more strategically about what is important to keep the mission running, and about where there information is at all times”. Adversaries are now shifting their tactics to attack trust, and take our data hostage—as evident in the global ransom ware attacks---- this is an escalation and the more dependent we become as digital societies, this will give rise to increased attacks on our data networks, and information that we depend on for our daily lives--- the stakes will just get higher and higher as time goes on.

Mr. Bargar leads a consulting group comprised of similarly experienced experts working with the private sector and governments worldwide on resilient architectures, effective strategies, and leap ahead technologies to reduce risk and create business opportunity. Anthony is currently focused in SE Asia enhancing cyber maturity to counter for next generation adversaries. He launched CSCG’s SE Asia HQ in Singapore and has recently inked a collaboration with CIO Connect Pte Ltd to educate Boards of Directors, CIOs, other C level executives and senior leaders on Cyber Security, the ever increasing risks and how they can be thwarted.

CIO Connect is a boutique advisory firm that brings pragmatic tangible advice from tenured advisors with extensive experience of working in IT and the business. We provide advice to technology and business leaders on the opportunities and challenges that digital technology developments create.

“Effective Cyber Security Leadership, starts of course with a well informed board of directors, and their management team who can quickly understand the risks, consequences, and cascade effects of a cyber threat and the decisions they make”—said Anthony Bargar.

“We have been searching for the right senior level cyber security expert who can discuss Cyber strategies with C suite members and the technical implications for IT people. There are many people positioning themselves as experts who aren’t.” – said Barb Dossetter

Working with CIO Connect, the Cyber Security Consulting Group will offer a series of Master Classes on the following subjects:

  • Data Breaches and Cyber Resilience– Strategies, tactics and countermeasures to today’s ransomware and other sophisticated cyber threats.

  • Controlling Cyber Risks from 3rd Parties and Outsourcing ICT Operations– Recognizing risks to your organizations resulting from the growing trends of cloud computing, outsourcing ICT operations, and increasing dependence on 3rd parties.

  • Executive Management of Cyber Security – Build a plan to manage board communications, ask the right questions as leaders, evaluate the effectiveness of your programs (Cyber Maturity Analysis), and implement a governance program that is flexible and adaptable to the cyber threats tailored to your organization.

If you would like to talk to us to understand more, please contact Emma Burrows emma.burrows@cio- or you can find out more by visiting our website at