New Lavin Speaker Laura Galante: Defending Cyberspace As We Would Our Land, Sea, and Air
To Laura Galante, cyber security—and cyber literacy—are indispensable tools for any government or corporation. From The New York Times and CNN to the TED2017 mainstage, Galante makes sense of a subject notorious for spin—and links the need for digital literacy to a defense of both corporate security and democracy itself.
“How meaningful is the truth if you don’t know why it’s being revealed to you?”— Laura Galante
Laura Galante profiles advanced cyber threats and network breaches, investigating the political, military, and financial implications of cyber operations. While she knows the dangers that exist in unprotected cyberspace, she understands that the road to stronger defense is complicated—and to fully understand what we’re working with, we must know how we got here.
In her gripping talks, Galante expertly tracks the evolving history of how the digital sphere has been navigated (and manipulated). For instance, how did Chinese military hackers steal a decade’s worth of R&D from global corporations? How did a frequently dismissed state—North Korea—cause the first major US response to a cyber attack? How did hackers with Wall Street-fluency breach media and healthcare companies so they could play the market? How were pro-Assad hackers able to lure Syrian rebel forces to give up battle plans and supply routes at a critical time in the Syrian war? And how did Russia go from elusive boogey man to actively influencing domestic political dialogues? Together we can “unflinchingly pursue the truth” that exists within all these questions.
Beyond outlining historical junctures, Galante also speaks larger ideas around the new digital zeitgeist: how information can be weaponized, and public opinion can be swayed with a carefully planted idea. She stresses the need for a greater cyber-fluency: how it’s up to us, and not rarified tech experts, to gain a working knowledge of the field. And she reminds us it’s not just systems, but minds that are under attack. In the age of information, critical thinking has never been more crucial—and with Galante, we can renew our commitment to honoring, and questioning, the truth.
Galante previously served as Director of Global Intelligence at FireEye, where her teams investigated network activity, profiled advanced threats, and communicated the political, military, and financial implications of cyber operations. A founding member of Mandiant Intelligence, her work has involved leading strategic analysis, developing intelligence capabilities and offerings, and directing intelligence publications, including: APT28: A Window into Russia’s State Cyber Espionage; Red Line Drawn: China Recalculates its Use of Cyber Espionage; and Hacking the Street? FIN4 Likely Playing the Market.