BrightWise Launched to Help Credit Unions Shore Up Front-Line Cybersecurity Protections
(Des Moines, Iowa – March 6, 2019) – Sherri Davidoff, a pioneer in the cybersecurity industry, has partnered with the Iowa Credit Union League’s holding company Affiliates Management Company (AMC), to build a cybersecurity training firm to serve credit unions. BrightWise, based in Des Moines, will be led by Davidoff as CEO and Corey Skadburg as COO. Skadburg is a financial services industry veteran with more than 15 years of experience helping financial institutions adapt for continued revenue and membership growth.
Davidoff, who also leads LMG Security, has 17 years of experience as a cybersecurity professional. LMG Security provides cybersecurity and digital forensic services to a diverse portfolio of clients throughout the U.S. and internationally. Davidoff’s areas of expertise include digital forensic examinations, penetration testing and security awareness. She holds a degree in computer science and electrical engineering from MIT. Davidoff is the real-life inspiration for the book Breaking and Entering: The Extraordinary Story of a Hacker Called "Alien.”
“It’s no longer 13-year-olds in their moms’ basements that are hacking us; it’s organized crime groups all over the world,” Davidoff shared with NBC’s Today Show, which recently profiled the MIT grad turned cybersecurity CEO.
According to Verizon’s 2018 Data Breach Investigations Report, organizations are nearly three times more likely to be breached by social attacks, such as phishing, than via actual vulnerabilities.
“People tend to think cybersecurity happens in the IT department,” said Davidoff. “In fact, keeping the cyber wolves at bay requires continuous, sharp-eyed guards at every point of entry. Front-line staff are under constant assault from crooks and their automated robots, look-alike communications and other crafty tricks. We have to arm employees with knowledge, but also give them the tactics they need to sidestep cyber sneak attacks.”
“Credit unions, even those with really robust cybersecurity programs, still have a significant vulnerability within the employee base,” said Skadburg. “While this is true for organizations in many industries, credit union staff are wired to bend over backward for members and their colleagues. If an unusual request comes across a credit union employee’s desk, skepticism can be overridden by a sense of duty to solve problems for people quickly. BrightWise training is designed to help credit unions balance exceptional member service with sound protection of the credit union from cybersecurity criminals and the increasingly sophisticated traps they set for employees.”
How BrightWise works with credit unions
BrightWise will initially offer subscription-based cybersecurity training through an online learning management system. The tool will give credit unions access to short and engaging training videos (3-5 minutes in length), quizzes, documentation, webinars and gamified features. Managers will track employee progress within the system, a function that will assist in satisfying the growing regulator insistence on continuous employee training.
Credit unions that partner with BrightWise purchase employee training on a per-seat basis and will have unfettered access to the complete BrightWise library, to which new content is added each month.
BrightWise's platform is designed to:
- Engage. A lighthearted, interactive learning journey engages the employee.
- Educate. Simple and understandable cybersecurity training makes employees wise to cyber threats.
- Empower. The end-goal is to create empowered employees who are alert and ready to be the first line of defense against cyber attacks.
All credit unions, regardless of a partnership with BrightWise, are invited to share the firm’s Facebook content with credit union members via their own social channels. Posts will share micro tips or trending pieces of cybersecurity news to help more consumers make smart choices throughout their work days.
CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) attendees are encouraged to stop by the BrightWise booth (#540) next week in Washington, D.C. to learn more about the company, its training services and how credit unions can begin delivering them to employees as early as April 1, 2019.
BrightWise was formed as a joint venture with Affiliates Management Company and LMG Security. The firm, led by CEO Sherri Davidoff, an MIT graduate turned “hacker for good,” helps organizations engage, educate and empower employees on how to deal with cybersecurity threats. Online training courses for front-line associates provide meaningful content to raise threat and vulnerability awareness while also engaging employees to become their organizations’ first line of defense against cyber threats. To learn more, visit bright-wise.com or follow the company on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.