Microsoft Is Getting a New ‘Outsider’ CISO

Microsoft Is Getting a New 'Outsider' CISO

December 6, 2023 at 05:46PM

Microsoft’s EVP of Security, Charlie Bell, announced that Bret Arsenault will transition from the CISO role to chief security adviser, and Igor Tsyganskiy is set to become the new CISO in the coming year. The change reflects a strategic emphasis on security and AI integration, and Tsyganskiy’s appointment is well-received despite his lack of prior CISO experience. This shift occurs as the CISO role evolves amid rising pressures and regulatory challenges.

Meeting Takeaways:

1. Microsoft is focusing on a new strategic direction in security.
2. Bret Arsenault is moving from Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) to a new position as Chief Security Adviser.
3. Igor Tsyganskiy will take over as the new CISO starting in the new year.
4. Arsenault’s new role will focus on expanding Microsoft’s impact on a broad range of stakeholders, including partners, customers, governmental agencies, and community groups.
5. There is an industry-wide evolution of the CISO role, due in part to increased accountability and legal pressures, as seen in the cases of Joe Sullivan (formerly of Uber) and Tim Brown (of SolarWinds).
6. There is a necessity to develop AI with a strong emphasis on built-in cybersecurity, an area where Arsenault is well-suited to lead.
7. Cybersecurity expert Jake Williams views the changes at Microsoft as positive and well-timed given new SEC regulations.
8. Tsyganskiy has a background as Chief Strategy Officer for security at Microsoft and a past role as CTO at Bridgewater Associates but has not served as CISO before.
9. His appointment is considered by some, like Claude Mandy of Symmetry Systems, as a bold step given his experience in technology and product development rather than direct CISO experience, indicating a potential shift towards building better security products.

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