The Nike swoosh was a conspicuous design at this year’s Black Hat USA cybersecurity conference, reports the Washington Post.
Like organizations as diverse as PepsiCo, Microsoft, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, retailers are increasingly getting more serious about cybersecurity, and Nike is proving to be especially assertive about bulking up its expertise.
Retailers are increasingly concerned about data breaches, which have become more frequent and more massive just as retailers are collecting more data than ever from their customers.
The picture of Nike wooing hackers and cybersecurity experts with after-hour parties, “scantily clad women,” and free sunglasses sounds like a strong play. But, whether or not Nike’s recruitment methods are sound, it’s a sign, at least, of how in demand cyber-security experts are in this digital age.
Certainly, for retailers, data breaches have proven to be indiscriminate and costly. And Sony’s hack last year showed how extensive the damage can be.
To ensure that the right steps are being taken, however, companies need to do more than make a splash at cybersecurity conferences or hacker fests, says Stephen Boyer, co-founder and CTO of BitSight.
“You have to have high level executive involvement because that opens up the budget and the resources,” Boyer told Retail Dive. “It’s not going to have the impact if it rests with the IT group. They can’t do more with less. The security performance is really a byproduct of the culture — they set the tone high up, and they set the budget, and that’s where we’re seeing the attitude change.”
And while the human resources are essential (and recruitment needs to be more refined) retailers also must keep up with the kind of technology that will help them discover, uncover, repair, and prevent breaches in a more timely manner. And retailers have to have the humans and technology that understand the unique needs of retail.
“There are too many orders from manual review that require a full time staff, and, worse, they’re not accurate,” Jason Tan, CEO and founder of fraud detection company Sift Science, told Retail Dive. “You want to be able to stop the bad users, but let in the good customers easily.”