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20 April 2020

Introducing ThirdSpace’s Head of Security Operations: Martin Webley

Mathew Richards

Get to know the man who’ll be leading the development of ThirdSpace’s exciting new security offerings.

The increase of new cyber threats and attacks continues to drive cyber security to the forefront of our minds.

To allow organisations to continue operating securely, Microsoft has doubled-down on their cyber security efforts over the past 18 months. We’ve seen the introduction of passwordless authentication, improvements to conditional access controls, new ATP technologies and, of course, the debut of Azure Sentinel.

But implementing and maintaining the wealth of security capabilities now available can be intimidating. Which is why ThirdSpace has been working on a very special project – the formation of our Managed Security Services and very own Security Operations Centre.

A security operations centre (more commonly referred to as a SOC) allows organisations to outsource the secure management of their IT environment, freeing their internal IT teams from wading through the sea of alerts to focus instead on moving your organisation forward.

Our first step toward constructing our ThirdSpace SOC was to find the right person to lead it. And so, without further ado, ThirdSpace would like to introduce you to our new Head of Security Operations, Martin Webley.

 

Shaping ThirdSpace’s security services

Mathew Richards: Hi Martin, welcome to ThirdSpace! We’ve got a very exciting time ahead of us as our security offerings develop, can you tell us a little bit about your role and what you’ll be focusing on?

Martin Webley: Well, my new role as Head of Security Operations will initially focus on working with ThirdSpace’s technical security teams to establish our new Security Operations Centre / Security Orchestration Automation & Response service.

I’ll be looking to bring together a team of highly experienced people with robust processes to complement and work in parallel with our existing IAM and CIAM offerings.

MR: Can’t wait to watch as that all comes together. Where have you come to ThirdSpace from?

MW: My previous position was as Head of Cyber Security for the NHS Wales Informatics Service, which included the responsibility for ensuring that critical clinical applications and underpinning national infrastructure remained resilient against cyber-related threats.

Ultimately, my role was to ensure that accurate information was available to authorised individuals as and when required to provide quality patient care.

My team were also responsible for national cyber incident response and co-ordination of NHS Wales, along with the provision of other specialist services.

MR: That sounds like some serious responsibility! What other experience will you be bringing to the role?

MW: Well, I have over 30+ years of experience in IT, with the last 15 being in cyber security, which is definitely where my passion lies. So I’m looking forward to applying that passion towards providing a security service that underpins, supports and enables organisations.

My career has also taken me across the public, private and third sector, covering insurance, finance, government and healthcare.

“We want to be our clients’ go-to organisation to help them implement and maintain security that supports and enables them to succeed.”

For the past 10 years or so, my career has seen me spending most of my time defining and delivering strategic security objectives for organisations, including establishing SOC teams and security capabilities from the ground up.

During that time, I’ve seen a steady increase in the resources organisations are putting into the security arrangements. This has been driven by the increasing threats and attacks that we’re (hopefully) all aware of, but also by a growing awareness at board and senior management level. This has, thankfully, led to better proportional investment in cyber as both a business AND an IT investment.

MR: Absolutely, and from the sounds of things our soon to be SOC is in safe hands! So, what’s first on the roadmap for developing the ThirdSpace Managed Security Services?

MW: I’ll be helping to deliver lots of new security services during 2020/21 and beyond. Initial services will be the SOC/SOAR offering, with information and technical assurance and bespoke consultancy services following shortly after.

MR: And why is now the right time to develop these services do you think?

MW: ThirdSpace already possesses a strong foundation and experience providing identity and access management services to clients who trust us, so it makes sense for us to be there to support their security needs as well.

There’s been an increasing demand for SOC/SOAR services due to the challenges clients face with recruiting, training and retaining skilled staff locally. Ultimately, we want to be our clients’ go-to organisation to help them implement and maintain security that supports and enables them to succeed.

MR: Microsoft have been making major strides with their security offerings in recent months. What is it about Microsoft’s security tech that makes them such a good bet for cyber security?

MW: A lot of people still don’t naturally associate Microsoft with security. That’s changing steadily, but they really are one of the major players in that space now.

So, if you think about it like that, it’s no surprise that Microsoft are driving this holistic approach to security, with Azure Sentinel, their Advanced Threat Protection technologies, Cloud App Security, etc. all taking big steps in the past 12-24 months.

And all of that tech is being fed by the largest source of telemetry data in the world, providing desperately needed visibility in this ever-expanding cloud network we find ourselves living in.

That all lends itself very nicely toward providing a strong monitoring and remediation capability, ideal for SOC purposes, with a low-cost initial implementation coupled with the ability to grow alongside your organisation.

MR: Brilliant Martin, thank you. I think we’re all looking forward to seeing how you develop the ThirdSpace security team over the coming months.

Head on over to our Cyber Security page to learn more about our security services.

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Author
Mathew Richards
Head of Mobility & Security
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Award-winning solutions Award-winning solutions

Eight-time winner of the Microsoft Partner of the Year Award for Identity Management, Enterprise Mobility, and Security and Compliance.

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