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Finney, George

George Finney


Southern Methodist University

George Finney, is a Chief Information Security Officer that believes that people are the key to solving our cybersecurity challenges. George has worked in Cybersecurity for nearly 20 years and has helped startups, global telecommunications firms, and nonprofits improve their security posture. As a part of his passion for education, George has taught cybersecurity at Southern Methodist University and is the author of several cybersecurity books including No More Magic Wands: Transformative Cybersecurity Change for Everyone. George has been recognized by Security Magazine as one of their top cybersecurity leaders in 2018 and is a part of the Texas CISO Council, is a member of the Board of Directors for the Palo Alto Networks FUEL User Group, and is an Advisory Board member for SecureWorld. George holds a Juris Doctorate from Southern Methodist University and a Bachelor of Arts from St. John’s College and as well as multiple cybersecurity certifications including the CISSP, CISM, and CIPP.


View From the CISO’s Office

Tuesday, July 30th
As enterprises embark on digital transformation, leading organizations are emphasizing a converged risk management approach bringing new players to the decision-making table. Physical security solutions increasingly interact with critical data sources to deliver more value to an organization, so what are information security professionals interested in when interacting with their physical security counterparts and their partners? How can physical security provide value –and hence buy in – from these new decision makers – with often bigger budgets. A distinguished panel of executives from the office of the chief information security officer (CISO) from leading organizations discuss these questions and more.

What Physical Security Can Learn From Cybersecurity

Wednesday, July 31st

You can’t have cybersecurity without physical security, and increasingly, you can’t have physical security without cybersecurity. Whether their focus is on hackers or intruders, security teams struggle with the same issues, and often compete for the same budget. Increasingly, law enforcement, chief security officers and chief information security officers (CISOs) are concerned with blended attacks that have both physical intrusions in conjunction or in support of cybersecurity breaches. This session will explore the lessons learned from the CISO of Southern Methodist University, which has integrated support for physical security technologies and cybersecurity on the same team. Five years later, the team has completed a campus-wide lockdown initiative, centralized support, increased response time, improved the student experience, and helped to reduce crime on campus– all while hardening systems against hacking.

Attendees will learn to:

  •  Recognize the impact that cyber threat actors can have on physical security technologies and how to prevent them from being attacked over the network
  •  Observe the importance of the appropriate physical security protections required to maintain cybersecurity
  • Identify the challenges that are faced when integrating physical security technologies: architecture, device hardening, monitoring and explain the benefits of community threat intelligence sharing when it comes to physical security technologies