September 11, 2006

I’ve been predicting for a few years now that eventually, security (and the provision of security services) would become a differentiator for how we do business. For some of my clients, we already have evidence that early and more effective compliance with regulations indeed allows them to be more competitive.

And now, it appears that AOL is getting into the game. The USA Today is reporting that AOL will be offering Identity Theft protection in a service that could be launched/announced today. I scanned it quick – and to be honest – it looked interesting enough that I look forward to learning more.

I’m curious what the cost for AOL would be to provide this, and if this is as good as it seems. My instincts suggest that it’s not, especially in the wake of the privacy debacle AOL recently faced.

But I’m willing to look beyond all of this right now – we are witnessing a step in the direction where security is becoming a differentiator! Someone’s decision to use or not use a service, to buy or not buy a product is influenced (to some extent) by security.

What does this mean for us?

1. We have to consider that security may not be an important driver for our customers and businesses. Instead of simply being a cost, perhaps now we can positively impact the bottom line by bringing more customers to our solution.

2. The ‘us versus them’ mentality of Security 1.0 has got to be thrown out the window. This is not about balance, this is about ‘integration.’ The successful solutions will be incorporated designed into the solution and easier to use than to ignore. We have to communicate the benefit in an intuitive way and demonstrate a difference without being complicated.

The need for Security 2.0 is clear, and we have started the journey! Security makes a difference.

About the Author Michael Santarcangelo

The founder of Security Catalyst, Michael develops exceptional leaders and powerful communicators with the security mindset for success.

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