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Accenture Security Chief On The Russian Threat, Ransomware And The Classic Mistake That Solution Providers Make

Jay Fitzgerald

‘Security is not just about protecting the digital business from what is well known. Even more, it‘s about protecting from what is coming next,’ says Paolo Dal Cin of Accenture.

Paolo Dal Cin this week officially took command of Accenture’s giant global cybersecurity business – and he most definitely will have his hands full in coming weeks and months.

With 16,000 employees and $6 billion in revenue under his control, Dal Cin, who previously headed Accenture’s cybersecurity business in Europe, will be overseeing a sprawling and still-growing global operation at a time of heightened concerns over cyber threats.

In an interview with CRN, Dal Cin, 46, who is based in Milan, Italy, expressed concern about possible cyberattacks stemming from the Russian-Ukrainian war, the threats that keep him awake at nights, and his belief that Accenture needs to hire more non-IT people, such as criminologists, in order to combat cyberattackers.

Dal Cin replaces Kelly Bissell as head of Accenture Security, who left in February to become corporate vice president at Microsoft, according to his LinkedIn page.

[RELATED STORY: Accenture’s Most Highly Compensated Executives In 2021]

After Accenture’s big 2020 acquisition of Symantec’s cybersecurity services business, Dal Cin isn’t ruling out more takeovers of other security companies, but he made clear Accenture will be “really selective” about acquisitions moving forward.

In the interview with CRN, Dal Cin also talked about the biggest mistakes solution providers make and his views on consolidation within the cybersecurity sector.

Here are some excerpts from the interview:

What are the big threats you see coming in 2022 for your customers?

From one side, I think that there is a consistent trend about ransomware. This is something that we see everyday in the market. But I think that the trend that is becoming more and more important is the political one. With the crisis between Russia and Ukraine, I think that the attacks are becoming more and more politically driven, more than just financially driven. This is the trend that we see in the market.

[Editor’s note: Last year, Accenture itself was hit by a ransomware attack, with a hacker group using the LockBit ransomware threatening to release the company’s data and sell insider information. Accenture declined comment for this article about last year’s ransomware incident, repeating only that the attack led to “no impact on Accenture’s operations, or on our clients’ systems.”]

 
Jay Fitzgerald

Jay Fitzgerald is a senior editor covering cybersecurity for CRN. Jay previously freelanced for the Boston Globe, Boston Business Journal, Boston magazine, Banker & Tradesman, MassterList.com, Harvard Business School’s Working Knowledge, the National Bureau of Economic Research and other entities. He can be reached at jfitzgerald@thechannelcompany.com.

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