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Watch the ‘Women in Cyber Risk’ Webinar on Building a Satisfying Career in Information Security and Risk Management

[fa icon="calendar"] Jun 23, 2021 3:20:25 PM / by Jeff B. Copeland

Women in Cyber Risk ManagementWomen at any stage of a career in cyber risk, and especially young women considering the career, will find in this webinar many helpful tips on successfully navigating a male-dominated profession, finding mentors, developing the right skills – and accepting that in this fast-changing field, perfection isn’t a requirement.

Watch the webinar on demand now: Women in Cyber Risk: Redefining the Future of Cyber Risk

Led by Luke Bader, Director, Memberships and Programs, for the FAIR Institute, our panel is two experienced FAIR advocates and practitioners, one early in her career, one a 25-year cybersecurity veteran:

  • Taylor Maze, Senior Consultant, Professional Services, RiskLens
  • Mary Elizabeth Faulkner, CISO, Thrivent 

Mary Elizabeth Faulkner - Thrivent 2Both started their careers at big accounting/consulting firms – Mary as a computer forensic investigator, Taylor in IT audit – and found themselves pulled into cyber risk management. The appeal, as Mary says, is “to be able to identify threats, figure out what those threats are going against, what are the impacts to an organization, tell a story and be a business enabler against that story.”

A few highlights from the webinar :

On the skills that make for success for women in cyber risk 

Mary: “Business acumen is really important. You have to understand what the business risk is…Being bilingual is another thing - not too much geek speak…You have to be able to communicate in a way that lands and resonates with that business partner. That conversation is an opportunity for education bi-directionally.” 

On thriving in a male-dominated profession 

Mary: “Sometimes, the biggest hurdle is thinking that there is a hurdle to jump over. We’re in 2021 and, although it’s still a male-dominated profession, we are seeing an increase in female CISOs in large organizations, probably more so in last three to five years than ever before.” 

Taylor: “Having a male-dominated industry to some extent can be a benefit to women as well because it really pushes you to work a little bit harder to make sure your voice is being heard. And it challenges you to think about problems a little differently.  I never felt unable to have significant opportunities that I wanted, it’s just being more cognizant of them and not being intimidated.”

Taylor Maze - RiskLens 2On finding mentors 

Taylor: “Sometime in college I was taught this concept of having a board of directors in your life, this group of people that help guide and motivate you and are your sounding board for decisions. I am very lucky and privileged to have quite a large board of directors around myself, the first of which is one of my professors who helped run the women in information systems group.” 

On overcoming the need to be perfect 

Taylor: “Earlier in my career…I wanted to exceed all the expectations and it’s really painful when you realize that you haven’t in some way. One thing I’ve found is, with how quickly the cybersecurity industry changes, I will never know everything there is to know. My best hope is learning from other people who know more than me and just being as much of a sponge as I can.” 

Mary: “I think it is really important, regardless of female vs male, that it is OK being vulnerable. That vulnerability creates authenticity and trust…Also, as you go forward in a career in information security, there is a part of tactical expertise that you’ll start to push off to the wayside but then your leadership needs to grow. Still, you need to maintain relevance on what’s current…It’s a difficult balance.”

Watch the webinar on demand now: Women in Cyber Risk: Redefining the Future of Cyber Risk


Meet a Member: Mary Faulkner, CISO at Thrivent, with Tips on Building Support in the Business for FAIR [Video]

Topics: Guides & Tips

Jeff B. Copeland

Written by Jeff B. Copeland

Jeff is the Content Marketing Manager for RiskLens.

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