We talked to Chris Woods, CEO, and Founder of CyberQ Group, a board-level priority, and strategies and procedures are essential to future-proof an organization against new adversaries and evolving threats.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Chris Woods: All good – obviously, these are challenging times for us all. I’m glad to see the UK government have a clear strategy to kick start the economy and get all businesses trading as normal – so that everyone can go about their daily lives. We are fortunate, thanks to technology, to be well adapted to working from home, but remote-working has meant fewer face-to-face interactions for my family and me. I am honestly looking forward to being able to meet people face to face again.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded CyberQ Group.
Chris Woods: I’ve been involved in cyber security for about twenty-five years working for large organizations across the globe. During an assignment in the Middle East, I decided I wanted to pursue my dreams and create an innovative cyber security organization. So, in 2016, once I returned to the UK, I created CyberQ Group.
How does CyberQ Group innovate?
Chris Woods: Innovation is in our brand DNA. The clue is in our name – CyberQ Group. ‘Cyber’ is what we live and breathe – we are not an IT company. We are a cyber security specialist service offering quality bespoke support and protection. We exist to protect our clients’ data and safeguard their reputation so ‘cyber’ and protection for our clients is the foundation of our business. The Letter ‘Q’ relates to my time working in partnership with GCH’Q,’ and as a massive James Bond fan, the nature of the character Q has always been aspirational for me. Finally, we are a group because we have offices globally – in the US, Philippines, and the UK.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Chris Woods: Fortunately, we have been busier than ever. As the widespread adoption of remote working has increased, we’ve seen a knock-on effect with the types of attacks we address. With cyber security now at the heart of everyday business functions, we are well-positioned to help our clients protect their data, and in turn, their reputation.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Chris Woods: Our entire global team is now working from home. However, as we provide 24/7, 365-day monitoring for clients from our managed Security Operations Centre (SOC) – remote working has posed a few challenges. However, over the last 12 months, we have evolved to implement new processes and tools that provide better value for our clients.
What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to navigate this crisis?
Chris Woods: Our core culture at CyberQ Group is crucial to our success, and as the famous saying goes, ‘Culture eats strategy for breakfast!’. We are fortunate, as we hire for the passion that our individuals want to be a part of the growing global cyber security business. At the end of the day, our employees are our business, so empowering them and creating a culture to grow is how we have managed to grow our business so rapidly, globally.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Chris Woods: Our main objective is to serve our clients as best as we possibly can. That is what we focus on, and that is how we have got to where we are. We don’t compete with anybody else because our challenges and successes are specific to us. We know cyber.
Be careful out there and make sure your business is Cyber Resilient!
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