We’re definitely stronger together: top 3 takeaways from RSA Conference 2023

· 3 MIN READ · KELLY FIEDLER · MAY 5, 2023 · TAGS: Cloud security / Company news / MDR / Tech tools

We’re still whirling from our second year on the show floor at RSA Conference (RSAC) 2023! It was a week well-spent, full of interesting sessions, meaningful connections, and a whole lot of fun.

The conference buzzed with pre-pandemic levels of excitement as we maneuvered through Moscone—chatting with friends and swapping tales from the security operations center (SOC) on the latest cybersecurity threats and trends.

Our team at the booth stayed busy from opening to closing announcements each day, giving demos, talking shop, and showing an approach to security that can actually be delightful. Also, local artist Bee Betwee joined us to create an art installation highlighting the many faces, backgrounds, and experiences that represent cybersecurity, a tangible ode to this year’s theme of “Stronger Together.”

Now that the dust has settled and we’ve had some time to reflect, here are our top takeaways from the show.

  1. There are lessons for defenders in the most unexpected places.
    The most surprising thing from this year’s conference? How star-studded an affair it really was! From Saturday Night Live legend Fred Armisen, to Monty Python’s Eric Idle, country music sensation Chris Stapleton, and famed physicist Michio Kaku (to name a few), it was hard not to be a little star-struck at this year’s conference. But even if their sessions weren’t exclusively about security, the undercurrent of community and collaboration was ever-present. RSAC is about the fellowship among defenders, as we’re all tasked with the same challenge. Our adversaries are just as creative, smart, and well-resourced as we are, so our best advantage is to band together in fighting the good fight. (Who knew how much we needed a rendition of The Beatles’, “All You Need Is Love,” led by Fred Armisen, to remind us?)
  2. Generative AI is here to stay, and it’s up to us to use it wisely.
    The promise of generative artificial intelligence (AI) represents as great an opportunity as it does a responsibility. It has the potential to change lives—from relieving burnout by handling tedious tasks, to the effect it can have on the cybersecurity skills gap in both training and breaking down barriers for equity and inclusivity. The onus is on us, the defender community, to make a conscious effort to encourage mindful use of these tools to ensure they’re fed with a diversity of thought and experiences. Our concern shouldn’t be about what AI can do on its own, but what people can accomplish when we harness this technology correctly. Security-specific AI requires the combination of AI, hyperscale data, and threat intelligence, balanced with people as the important decision makers. This is a balance we’ve believed in—and done, with our friendly detection and response bots, Josie™ and Ruxie™—since our inception, as our founders started Expel with a technology-forward approach.
  3. At the end of the day, we’re solving people problems.
    From the talent gap, to the challenges and excitement presented by AI, to ‌ cybercriminals themselves, the common challenge is clear: we face a people problem. Whether talking about the White House security or the World Cup, the core takeaway was that the only way forward in the cybersecurity battle is to face it together. Another one of these “people problems” we talk about a lot is burnout—it’s an industry buzzword for a reason. Analysts drown in reams of alerts daily, and it’s no secret that, without the right tech in place, the triage is tedious. So how can we do high-quality work without making our people miserable? From the jump, we’ve believed the key to solving this people problem boils down to resourcing—finding the right combination of skilled analysts and advanced automation that lets each do what they do best.

Throughout the week, one thing was evident: it’s going to take a village. The “Stronger Together” theme really resonated with us at Expel because we’ve always believed in collaboration and information sharing amongst the defender community to make us better as a whole. It’s the reason we continue to share trends and recommendations from our SOC with our quarterly and annual threat reports, and why we keep it real here on our blog.

We’re also continuing to expand our solutions portfolio to keep pace with cybercriminals. At RSAC, we announced Expel Vulnerability Prioritization, a new solution that highlights which vulnerabilities pose the greatest risk, so organizations can take immediate, informed action.

We’re just getting started this year, and we can’t wait to keep up the momentum. If you want to keep the conversation going, drop us a line anytime.