People & Security


Education Level: Basic

4215 - Cyber, Risk and Gender: Is There a White Male Effect in Cybersecurity?

Monday, September 25
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Accurate assessment of risk is vital for effective cybersecurity, yet numerous studies show that perceptions of risk vary considerably, between demographic groups and along gender lines. Leveraging established research in areas like cultural theory of risk perception, plus original research by the authors, this session presents evidence of a “white male effect” leading to underestimation of technology risks. Could this account for the persistent insecurity of digital product design? Does it undermine efforts to protect information systems from criminal abuse? Given that most cybersecurity professionals are males who tend to see more risk in technology than their peers, the researchers explore the causes of white male effect, then suggest strategies for countering its influence, such as increasing diversity in technology companies and the cybersecurity workforce.

Learning Objectives:

Stephen Cobb

Senior Security Resesarcher

Stephen Cobb received his master’s degree in security and risk management from the Criminology Department of the University of Leicester in England. He published his first computer security text in 1991 and has been a CISSP for more than two decades. Stephen has been widely published in trade journals, textbooks, and conference proceedings. His master’s research examined the qualities of effective information security professionals and challenged assumptions underlying efforts to close the cybersecurity skills gap. He currently leads a vendor-neutral research team for ESET, an IT security software company.


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Lysa Myers

Security Researcher III

Lysa Myers began her tenure in malware research labs in the weeks before the Melissa virus outbreak in 1999. Working in cybersecurity and malicious code research since then, she has tracked dramatic changes both in the malware landscape and in the security technologies used help to prevent these and other threats. Lysa's bylined articles of expert security advice have regularly appeared in Dark Reading, CSO Online and CMS Passcode, as well as SC Magazine, Health Management Technology, Electronic Health Reporter and Health IT Security.


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4215 - Cyber, Risk and Gender: Is There a White Male Effect in Cybersecurity?

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Send Email for Cyber, Risk and Gender: Is There a White Male Effect in Cybersecurity?