Firewall Finesse: The Journey of a Female CEO in the Cybersecurity Jungle

Meet Katerina Tasiopoulou, the cybersecurity CEO who would likely wear a firewalled cape if she were a superhero. In the new battlefield of AI, she advocates for AI in Ethical Hacking. But remember chaps, her code-cracking prowess is what defines her, not her gender. Now, who’s up for some solid penetration testing?

Hot Take:

Feast your eyes on this tale of a coding prodigy turned CEO of her own cybersecurity firm. Katerina Tasiopoulou, a woman in the male-dominated world of cybersecurity, charts her journey from an incident response engineer to a CEO. In a world where AI is the new battlefield, she insists on the need for ethical hacking, and solid penetration testing as the one consistent approach to evaluate defences. Also, she emphasizes the importance of equality regardless of gender in the tech industry. She’s not a superhero, but if she had a cape, it would probably be firewalled.

Key Points:

  • From a young age, Katerina Tasiopoulou developed a passion for coding and cybersecurity, leading her to establish her own company, Exelasis.
  • Despite the challenges of being a woman in a male-dominated field, Katerina insists on being appreciated for her skills and input, not her gender.
  • She regards the BCS Young Professional Award she received in 2018 as a significant stepping stone in her career journey.
  • Katerina identifies the rapid evolution of technology as a challenge for cybersecurity, advocating for consistent penetration testing as a means of evaluating defences.
  • She views AI as a tool to enhance cybersecurity and insists on maintaining ethical guidelines for its use, particularly as AI begins to play a role in advanced hacking techniques.

Need to know more?

From Coding Novice to Cybersecurity Queen

Katerina Tasiopoulou's path to cybersecurity fame began with a simple school assembly where she pointed out a coding error. This eventually led her to study computer science and cybersecurity at university level and work for IBM before founding Exelasis.

Breaking the Glass Firewall

Even though Tasiopoulou found herself being the only woman in her class at university and often not taken seriously in the professional world, she persevered. She wants to be recognized for her skills and contributions, not her gender.

The Power of Recognition

Winning the BCS Young Professional Award in 2018 was a game-changer for Tasiopoulou. The award brought recognition, confidence, and networking opportunities, which she considers invaluable even now as a CEO.

The Cybersecurity Evolution Challenge

Tasiopoulou sees the rapid evolution of technology as a major challenge for cybersecurity. She asserts that even as new threats emerge, old ones still need addressing. Her solution? Penetration testing or ethical hacking to consistently evaluate defences.

AI: The New Cyber Battlefield

Tasiopoulou views AI as a tool that can greatly enhance cybersecurity, particularly in areas such as threat detection and incident response. However, she also warns of the potential dangers if AI, trained in advanced hacking techniques, falls into the wrong hands. She stresses the need for a moral and ethical code around AI use in cybersecurity.

AI: Not a Replacement but an Enhancement

Tasiopoulou doesn't see AI as a substitute for human roles in cybersecurity but as an enhancement. She expresses concern about the potential for AI to replace entry-level roles in IT and security, emphasizing that beginners need these roles to gain essential skills and experience.
Tags: Artificial Intelligence, BCS Young Professional Award, ethical hacking, Exelasis, Katerina Tasiopoulou, penetration testing, women in tech