Episode 1: Welcome to the Basics

Welcome to the Basics

Co-hosts Sean Atkinson and Tony Sager welcome you to the CIS podcast Cybersecurity Where you Are.
This episode gives you an overview of what the Center for Internet Security is, how the co-hosts grew with the industry, and the importance of basic cyber hygiene.


The Center for Internet Security is a community-driven nonprofit, responsible for the CIS Controls® and CIS Benchmarks™, globally recognized best practices for securing IT systems and data. We lead a global community of IT professionals to continuously evolve these standards to proactively safeguard against emerging threats.

CIS is home to the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center® (MS-ISAC®), the trusted resource for cyber threat prevention, protection, response, and recovery for U.S. State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial government entities, and the Elections Infrastructure Information Sharing and Analysis Center® (EI-ISAC®), which supports the rapidly changing cybersecurity needs of U.S. elections offices.

Meet co-host Tony Sager – Tony has over 43 years of experience in the industry most of which was with the National Security Agency (NSA). With a background as a mathematician, he worked at the NSA in the Communications Security Interim Program focusing on the security of U.S. systems. He worked mostly on cryptography and confidentiality in the interest of the country’s defense. He then moved to Computer Science when computers began to move from large systems in buildings to at home workstations (do you remember the Apple2+?). Tony witnessed the transition of cybersecurity from mathematics to information and communications and found himself in great company helping to develop CIS over the passed 20 years.

Meet co-host Sean Atkinson – Sean lived in England for about 20 years before moving back to the U.S. His background was not actually in computer science but carried an MBA in Business but with a concentration in Technology Management. He credit the book “A Business Data Networks and Telecommunications” by Raymond Panko for getting him into Network and Technology Specialization. He then worked as a IT Auditor and in 2004 found himself working on Section 404 projects. He then worked in State Government moving his way up to security Manager implementing PeopleSoft when adding security to the software lifecycle was in its infancy. He then moved to the Dept of Defense and now has worked with CIS as CISO to frame best practices and implementation.

Basic Cyber Hygiene – We know cybersecurity is an issue for any business, but where do you start? By looking at your data, networks, and systems from a risk perspective you can then implement means to protect it. There are foundational best practices that everyone can do and should do. Tony and Sean will touch on the CIS Controls – the prioritized set of actions to protect your organization and data from known cyberattack vectors – and what actions to take first.

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