Should CIO’s Top Priority be Cyber Security?

Jason Maude

Chief Technology Advocate at Starling Bank

Learning Objectives

Prior to COVID-19, often when IT leaders made budget requests for tools and software (most that would eventually become mission critical during the massive upheaval), they were given little attention. It is no secret amongst IT leaders that in reality the person with the most influence gets what they need and the person describing the realities of a risk that feels the most foreign to the business tends to end up with the least! In 2021 however boards are listening, on the back of a raft of COVID-related business outcomes. So, with an open goal what should CIOs be fighting for? Many would argue the answer to this is clearing technical debt, as it has implications for operating budgets, security, maintenance, creating space for IT upskilling and of course protection against unforeseen events. Others would say that security is the top priority now, given the frequency of attacks seen during lockdown for example. Anything else is a benefit and will likely lead to removal of some tech debt in the process. So, should a CIO’s top priority be Cyber Security?