ISACA: IT Resilience
© 2011 FrontLine Security (Vol 6, No 3)

The worlds of information technology and international commerce are ­inextricably intertwined. As private and public sector organizations reach out to the world – either in the same community or across the globe, they rely on their Information Technology environments to enable their business to succeed.

The ISACA Ottawa Valley Chapter (OVC) is one of 190 chapters around the world. It was founded in 1978 and its mission is to lead local knowledge, certifications, community, advocacy and education programs in the areas of information systems assurance and security, enterprise governance of Information Technology, and IT-related risk and compliance. “ISACA”, says Robert Venczel, the OVC President, “helps IT ­professionals and enterprise leaders fulfill their IT governance responsibilities while delivering value to the business. We also provide our members with access to contacts and career opportunities within the community.”

In terms of current security threats, Venczel thinks that ISACA has a key role when it comes to implementing important controls to prevent and detect cyber attacks. “The things you need to look for,” says Venczel, are “the boring things like security policy development; security architecture design and integration; authentication; intrusion and virus detection; encryption; attack and penetration testing; etcetera. These may sound like mundane tasks but they are the very basic requirements for a safe IT environment.”

Venczel is passionate about the need for an organization like ISACA so that the benefits of collaborative experience and professional development can be used to protect the corporate and public interests that are at stake within large scale IT environments. “ISACA certified individuals follow industry-accepted practices and high professional standards, and are highly trained in helping organizations implement such key controls to reduce the probability of cyber attacks happening, and their expected impact.” ISACA developed and maintains the internationally recognized COBIT, Val IT and Risk IT frameworks, helping IT professionals and enterprise leaders fulfill their IT governance responsibilities while delivering value to the business.

“When it comes to IT security challenges and the impact of cyber attacks, including those perpetrated internally by those who were thought to be trusted employees, private and public sector organizations alike are exposed to risks and vulnerabilities,” notes Venczel. However, being part of a large international organization, like 95,000-member ISACA, brings a series of benefits. For instance, ISACA members have access to globally accepted research on leading security solutions, certifications and community collaboration. These tend to result in greater “trust in” and “value from” information systems (IS).

ISACA’s IS auditing and control standards are followed by practitioners worldwide, says Venczel, who point out that “our research pinpoints professional issues challenging enterprises today.” By completing the range of protections offered by ISACA, he believes enterprises can feel much safer “and will, in fact, be more IT resilient.”

ISACA OVC Speaker Resource

ISACA Ottawa Valley Chapter is a highly respected and sought-after resource for ­professional education and development. Past events included high profile public and private sector speakers such as:

  • Corinne Charette, CIO of Canada
  • James Ralston, Comptroller General of Canada
  • Jennifer Okimoto, Associate Partner S&T Global Center of ­Competence Social Business at IBM Global ­Business Services

© FrontLine Security 2011