Extra cyber security measures for CEOs are not a luxury

Fox-IT’s Chief Research Officers confirms in an interview with RTL Z that CEO’s and other people in powerful positions should extra carefully handle classified information. Because of their positions they are interesting targets for cyber criminals. 

The extortion case around Jeff Bezos shows that even the CEO of one of the most successful and wealthiest companies in the world is vulnerable to hackers. The American gossip magazine National Enquirer published texts coming from Bezos’ private cellphone. Thereafter the media company tried to stop in an investigation by threatening with spreading more of Bezos’ private business. Bezos’ safety consultant claims that Saoudi Arabia had access to the CEO’s private phone.

The Bezos’ case may look very specific at first sight, but teaches us a couple of important lessons. “Every large corporation should map the risks for its CEO,” emphasizes De Jong. “The context of your CEO is decisive for what you specifically can get confronted with and to what extent the risks are. It is not possible to separate private and business, your opponents do not do that either. Also the context is not fixed data. For example a merger. Does a merger change the context? We have semiannually meetings with some of our customers’ boards to discuss relevant threats to maintain the awareness.”

Fox-IT: “Every large corporation should regularly map the risks for its CEO.” 

Moreover chose Bezos to go on the warpath and published the National Enquirer’s extortion practices in a blog. De Jong: “His reaction was really good: he refused to get extorted. He took the sting out of it.”

Erik de Jong

Chief Research Officer
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