SC's Illena Armstrong named Global Institute for Cyber-security & Research Fellow

News by Staff Report

Illena Armstrong, SC Media's VP editorial has been named an Institute Fellow by the Global Institute for Cybersecurity and Research (GICSR).

Illena Armstrong, VP, editorial, has been named an Institute Fellow by the Global Institute for Cybersecurity and Research (GICSR). The GICSR Fellow Programme recognises an exemplary group of individuals who have distinguished themselves in advancing the stature and influence of information security professionals, and the importance of their contributions.

"It's humbling and just wonderful to receive such a recognition,” said Illena. “My team and I are thankful as we have worked diligently to secure a well-rooted, leading role in doing whatever we can to tout and support the overall cyber-security arena for almost 30 years now. Such efforts include furnishing industry professionals with a robust and informative website, holding expert-led online and live events, paying homage to the leading lights of this space at our annual Awards gala, and so much more. This distinctive honor from the GICSR speaks to these indefatigable, relentlessly creative endeavors, and the great care, commitment and responsibility the SC team and I adopt everyday in hopes of constantly reinforcing the continual growth of this vibrant industry and championing the work and achievements of its myriad practitioners."

GICSR, a non-profit organisation headquartered at the Centre for Space Education at NASA/Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, was founded in 2009 as a public- and private-sector collaborative effort to facilitate open dialogue, critical insight and thought exchange to define and deliver scalable, flexible and adaptable critical infrastructure cyber-resilience solutions.

To support critical infrastructure protection, GICSR's Global Situational Awareness Center (GSAC) encompasses an all-hazards (cyber/physical) threat intelligence and incident response information sharing security operations center that works in collaboration with the US Department of Homeland Security and provides leadership and facilities support to the International Association of Certified ISAOs (IACI), as well as global ISAOs and ISACs. 

Further, to bolster fully operationalising the 2015 Executive Order “Promoting Private-Sector Cyber-security Information Sharing,” GICSR partnered with and provides leadership and facilities support to The International Association of Certified ISAOs (IACI), a non-profit organization.  IACI is the global association connecting ISAOs and ISACs to work collectively, breaking down long-standing barriers and silos to advance cyber resilience. IACI's and GICSR's infrastructure includes helping ISAOs to form and operationalise with management, administration, operations and technology support.

Moreover, GICSR and IACI provide ISAOs and ISACs with a free collaboration suite, and access to a global threat intel information sharing and response platform that includes coordination with US DHS, US-CERT, NATO, 139 global CERTs, academia and public-and private-sector organisations, secure ‘military-grade' encrypted communications, 24/7 threat intelligence advisories, alerts, and opportunities to participate on cyber-resilience programs and initiatives.

Since 2015, new ISAOs and ISACs continue their success - including, but not limited to the National Credit Union ISAO, the Maritime & Port Security ISAO, the Mining & Metals ISAC, the Defence Industrial Base ISAC, and new ISAOs - the National Election System ISAO, Global Manufacturing ISAO, Air & Space ISAO, Unmanned Systems ISAO, Population Health ISAO, with new ISAO announcements coming.

As a newly named Fellow, Armstrong will join a core group of advisors to GICSR and the ISAO program, representing all facets of the cyber-security field.

"In keeping with GICSR's mission to advance cyber-resilience, we are thrilled to recognise Illena Armstrong, VP, Editorial, of SC Media into the GICSR Fellows Programme," said Deborah Kobza, GICSR's Founder and CEO. "Election to the GICSR Fellow status represents achievement of the highest professional accolade bestowed to an individual that has made a tangible positive impact to advance global cyber-resilience.  Illena's leadership communicating across numerous continents to constantly build and sustain audience interest and engagement in security represents a shining example of valued information sharing."

Gene Fredriksen, Chief Security Strategist, PSCU, and Executive Director of the National Credit Union ISAO, added that as he and his colleagues at the GICSR considered the first round of nominees, “the name that jumped to mind was Illena. Her commitment to growing and recognising the achievements in the field of info security is second to none. This is exhibited by her efforts in publishing, conferences, the SC Awards, and other programs too numerous to mention. When I look back on my career, Illena is one of the people I will list as being fortunate to have known. She was instrumental in urging me to complete my first book and has always been a sounding board for new ideas. Illena truly deserves the Fellowship designation. I look forward to her helping identify future nominees.”

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