Close
Josh Lefkowitz
Chief Executive Officer
Josh Lefkowitz executes the company’s strategic vision to empower organizations with Business Risk Intelligence (BRI). He has worked extensively with authorities to track and analyze terrorist groups. Mr. Lefkowitz also served as a consultant to the FBI’s senior management team and worked for a top tier, global investment bank. Mr. Lefkowitz holds an MBA from Harvard University and a BA from Williams College.
Evan Kohlmann
Chief Innovation Officer
Evan Kohlmann focuses on product innovation at Flashpoint where he leverages fifteen years’ experience tracking Al-Qaida, ISIS, and other terrorist groups. He has consulted for the US Department of Defense, the US Department of Justice, the Australian Federal Police, and Scotland Yard’s Counter Terrorism Command, among others. Mr. Kohlmann holds a JD from the Univ. of Pennsylvania Law School and a BSFS in International Politics from the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown Univ.
Josh Devon
Chief Operating Officer / VP Product
Josh Devon focuses on product vision and strategy at Flashpoint while ensuring the company’s departments function synergistically during its rapid growth. He also works to ensure that customers receive best in class products, services, and support. Previously, Mr. Devon co-founded the SITE Intelligence Group where he served as Assistant Director. He holds an MA from SAIS at Johns Hopkins Univ. At the Univ. of Pennsylvania, he received a BS in Economics from the Wharton School and a BA in English from the College of Arts and Sciences.
Jennifer Leggio
Chief Marketing Officer / VP Operations
Jennifer Leggio is responsible for Flashpoint’s marketing, customer acquisition, and operations. Ms. Leggio has more than 20 years of experience driving marketing, communications and go-to-market strategies in the cybersecurity industry. She’s previously held senior leadership roles at Digital Shadows, Cisco, Sourcefire, and Fortinet. She’s been a contributor to Forbes and ZDNet, and has spoken on the importance of coordinated disclosure at DEF CON and Hack in the Box, and on threat actor “publicity” trends at RSA Conference, Gartner Security Summit, and SXSW Interactive.
Chris Camacho
Chief Strategy Officer
Chris Camacho leads the company’s client engagement and development team, which includes customer success, business development, strategic integrations and the FPCollab sharing community. With over 15 years of cybersecurity leadership experience, he has spearheaded initiatives across Operational Strategy, Incident Response, Threat Management, and Security Operations to ensure cyber risk postures align with business goals. Most recently as a Senior Vice President of Information Security at Bank of America, Mr. Camacho was responsible for overseeing the Threat Management Program. An entrepreneur, Mr. Camacho also serves as CEO for NinjaJobs: a career-matching community for elite cybersecurity talent. He has a BS in Decision Sciences & Management of Information Systems from George Mason University.
Lisa Iadanza
Chief People Officer
Lisa M. Iadanza leads all functional areas of People Operations at Flashpoint, including human resources, talent acquisition & management, employee engagement, and developing high performance teams. In addition to collaborating with the executive team to drive strategic growth, she plays an integral role in fostering Flashpoint’s culture and mission. Driven by her passions for mentorship, employee advocacy, and talent development, Ms. Iadanza has more than twenty years of experience in building, scaling, and leading human resources functions. Prior to Flashpoint, she held leadership roles at Conde Nast, Terra Technology, and FreeWheel. She is a member of the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) and holds a bachelor’s degree in management with concentrations in human resources and marketing from State University of New York at Binghamton.
Rob Reznick
VP of Finance and Corporate Development
Rob Reznick leads the finance, accounting, and corporate development teams at Flashpoint. Rob previously served as Director of Finance & Accounting for 1010data (acquired by Advance/Newhouse), and Director of Finance for Financial Guard (acquired by Legg Mason) after prior work in forensic accounting and dispute consulting. Mr. Reznick is a Certified Public Accountant and holds an MBA and MAcc from the Fisher College of Business at the Ohio State University, and a BBA from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.
Lance James
Chief Scientist / VP Engineering
Lance James is responsible for leading Flashpoint’s technology development. Prior to joining Flashpoint in 2015, he was the Head of Cyber Intelligence at Deloitte & Touche LLP. Mr. James has been an active member of the security community for over 20 years and enjoys working creatively together with technology teams to design and develop impactful solutions that disrupt online threats.
Brian Costello
SVP Global Sales and Solution Architecture
Brian Costello, a 20-year information technology and security solutions veteran, is responsible for leading the Global Sales, Solution Architecture, and Professional Services teams at Flashpoint. Throughout his career, Brian has successfully built security and cloud teams that have provided customers with innovative technology solutions, exceeded targets and consistently grown business year over year. Prior to Flashpoint, Brian led a global security and cloud vertical practice for Verizon. Brian also held senior leadership roles at Invincea, Risk Analytics and Cybertrust. Brian received his B.A. from George Mason University.
Tom Hofmann
VP Intelligence
Tom Hofmann leads the intelligence directorate that is responsible for the collection, analysis, production, and dissemination of Deep and Dark Web data. He works closely with clients to prioritize their intelligence requirements and ensures internal Flashpoint operations are aligned to those needs. Mr. Hofmann has been at the forefront of cyber intelligence operations in the commercial, government, and military sectors, and is renowned for his ability to drive effective intelligence operations to support offensive and defensive network operations.
Jake Wells
VP, Client Engagement & Development
Jake Wells leads strategic integrations and information sharing as part of the client engagement & development team, which serves as an internal advocate for our government and commercial clients to ensure Flashpoint’s intelligence solutions meet their evolving needs. He leverages a decade of experience running cyber and counterterrorism investigations, most recently with the NYPD Intelligence Bureau, to maximize the value customers generate from our products and services. Mr. Wells holds an MA from Columbia University and a BA from Emory University.
Brian Brown
VP Business Development
Brian Brown is responsible for the overall direction of strategic sales and development supporting Flashpoint’s largest clients. In his role, Mr. Brown focuses on designing and executing growth-oriented sales penetration strategies across multiple vertical markets, including both Government and Commercial, supporting Flashpoint’s Sales and Business Development Teams. An experienced entrepreneur, Mr. Brown also serves as CSO for NinjaJobs, a private community created to match elite cybersecurity talent with top tier global jobs and also advise growth-stage cybersecurity companies.
Close
Steve Leightell
Steve started his career in Internet sales in the early 1990s and was always a top sales rep before transitioning to business development. By the early 2000s, he was the Director of Business Development at DWL, where he managed a team that built partnerships with Accenture, Oracle, Tata Consulting, Wipro, Cognizant and IBM. Steve designed the channel and strategy that ultimately culminated in the acquisition of DWL by IBM in 2005. He went on to lead a global team within IBM that was responsible for major system integrator partnerships. In 2008, he left IBM to found a niche consulting firm focused on business development for SaaS organizations. Steve holds a BA in anthropology and sociology from Carleton University in Ottawa.
Ellie Wheeler
Ellie Wheeler is a Partner at Greycroft and is based in the firm’s New York office. Prior to joining Greycroft, Ellie worked in a similar role evaluating investment opportunities at Lowercase Capital. Ellie also worked at Cisco in Corporate Development doing acquisitions, investments, and strategy within the unified communications, enterprise software, mobile, and video sectors. While at Cisco, she was involved in multiple acquisitions and investments, including PostPath, Jabber, Xobni, and Tandberg. She began her career in growth capital private equity at Summit Partners in Boston. Ellie graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University with a BA in Psychology and holds an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Glenn McGonnigle
Glenn McGonnigle is a General Partner at TechOperators. Prior to launching TechOperators in 2008, Glenn was CEO of VistaScape Security Systems, a venture-backed provider of enterprise intelligent video surveillance software. He lead the company through its successful sale to Siemens Building Technologies. Previously, Glenn was a co-founder and senior executive of Atlanta-based Internet Security Systems (ISS) where he helped raise initial venture capital and launch the business. For 7 years, he led the business development team in developing sales channels and entering the managed security services market. During his tenure, the company grew from startup to revenues of over $225 million and was later acquired by IBM for $1.3 billion.
Peter George
Peter George has an established track record of building companies that deliver sustained growth and profits and in identifying critical worldwide partnership opportunities that strategically expand market share. Prior to becoming President and CEO of Fidelis Security Systems in 2008, Mr. George spent the last seven years as President and CEO of Crossbeam Systems, the market leader in the high-end segment of the Unified Threat Management market, where he took the company from being a pre-revenue start-up to over $50 million in revenue. Previously, he was President of Nortel Networks Enterprise Business in Europe, Middle-East, and Africa, responsible for managing more than 5,000 employees and $2 billion in revenue. Mr. George came to Nortel via their 1998 acquisition of Bay Networks where he was serving as vice president of European operations. During his tenure at Wellfleet and Bay, he played key sales executive roles in New England and in Europe. Prior to joining Wellfleet, Mr. George served as the Northeast regional manager and GM of Canada at 3Com Corporation, and also held senior management positions at Ungerman Bass. He received his BA from the College of the Holy Cross, and has done graduate studies at Harvard and Oxford University.
Brendan Hannigan
Brendan joined Polaris Partners in 2016 as an entrepreneur partner. In this role, he focuses on funding and founding companies in the technology sector with a concentration in cloud, analytics, and cybersecurity. Brendan is a co-founder of Sonrai Security and chairman of Twistlock, both Polaris investments. He also currently serves on the board of Bitsight Technologies and Flashpoint. A 25 year technology industry veteran, Brendan was most recently the general manager of IBM Security. Under Brendan’s leadership, IBM Security grew significantly faster than the overall security market to become the number one enterprise security provider in the world with almost $2B of annual revenue.
image/svg+xml image/svg+xml
The Flashpoint Add-on for Splunk, which facilitates the delivery of Flashpoint technical data and associated context is now available. Learn More

The Physical Security Intelligence Cycle

Blog
junio 20, 2019

By Ian W. Gray

At first, the differences between cyber and physical security can seem stark. One is largely characterized by network security systems such as firewalls, software patches, and security operations center (SOC) personnel, and the other by physical deterrents such as guards, cameras, and barriers. But despite their inherent differences, these two functions share the common goal of defending against threats to manage risk. To do so, they both utilize intelligence: curated, meaningful information that helps decision makers address critical business challenges.

In this blog, we’ll take a step-by-step look at how the five-step intelligence cycle can serve as a valuable framework to help physical security teams identify, assess, and take action against threats to an organization’s people, assets, infrastructure, and operations.

Image 1: Diagram illustrating the steps of the intelligence cycle

Step 1: Planning & Direction

During the first stage, teams lay the groundwork for their operation by defining their intelligence requirements (IRs), which are the ultimate objective of the intelligence cycle. IRs should be timely and actionable, posing critical questions which must be answered to address a business need or challenge.

To illustrate how IRs can help physical security teams address a specific challenge, let’s zero in on a specific example. Suppose a global logistics company operates bulk carrier shipping routes between Asia and Europe via the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea, one of the world’s most vital yet high-risk maritime chokepoints. In order to help ensure the safety of personnel, assets, and infrastructure onboard its carriers, the company’s physical security team conducts an intelligence operation with the following IRs:

  • IR No. 1: Which physical threats are our bulk carriers, personnel, and cargo most likely to encounter during travel through the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea?
 
  • IR No. 2: If our bulk carriers, personnel, and/or cargo do encounter these threats, what would the potential impact be?
 
  • IR No. 3: What measures should be implemented to manage the risk posed by physical security threats to our bulk carriers, personnel, and cargo during travel through the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea?

Step 2: Collection

After establishing IRs, the next step in the intelligence cycle is to gather the information needed to identify and assess relevant threats. Collections sources depend on the specific challenge at hand, and since physical threat actors vary widely in terms of how they operate, teams should consult internal or third-party subject-matter experts to determine the best way to monitor each actor group on an ongoing basis.

As physical threat actors gravitate toward digital communication, visibility into covert sources such as deep and dark web (DDW) forums and encrypted chat services is an increasingly vital source for insight into emerging schemes, targeting methods, and tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs). In addition, teams should also engage in active information sharing with organizations facing similar physical security challenges and when appropriate, coordinate closely with local law enforcement.

Returning to our maritime physical security example, suppose our team gathers information from the following sources:

  • IR No. 1: Which physical threats are our bulk carriers, personnel, and cargo most likely to encounter during travel through the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea?

Finished intelligence report prepared by an external analyst with specialized knowledge of threats in the region.

  • IR No. 2: If our bulk carriers, personnel, and/or cargo do encounter these threats, what would the potential impact be?

Threat-actor conversations on DDW web forums and encrypted chat services, analyst reports detailing emerging developments, reports from international trade organizations and Protection and Indemnity (P&I) clubs detailing occurrences and impact of armed attacks against ships.

  • IR No. 3: What measures should be implemented to manage the risk posed by physical security threats to our bulk carriers, personnel, and cargo during travel through the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea?

Information-sharing communities focused on maritime physical security, industry- and situation-specific management best practices, guidelines from law-enforcement, and government agencies.

Step 3: Analysis

In the next step of the intelligence cycle, physical security teams examine the information they’ve collected to answer the questions specified as IRs. In the analysis step, physical security teams examine the information they’ve collected to determine which threats are present and the level of associated risk.

  • IR No. 1: Which physical threats are our bulk carriers, personnel, and cargo most likely to encounter during travel through the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea?

A threat is present when an actor has the motivation, capability, and intent to target an organization. The external analyst’s discovery of jihadist actors discussing potential attacks on ships in the region on a top-tier DDW forum indicates motivation and possible intent, while past attacks on millitary and freight vessels indicate capability. And while piracy in the region is on the decline, Somali pirates still waged 25 attacks between 2014 and 2018. These attacks waver based upon socio-economic and socio-political factors, as well as responses from the maritime industry.

Based on this information, jihadist actors and Somali pirates are identified as physical security threats along this route. In addition, given the group’s interest in targeting maritime vessels, the report also identifies proxies such as Iran-backed Houthi rebels as a potential threat should their capabilities improve.

  • IR No. 2: If our bulk carriers, personnel, and/or cargo do encounter these threats, what would the potential impact be?

Some physical security threats—such as retail shoplifting—occur frequently, but result in negligible impact from a single incident. In contrast, while pirate attacks are rare and maritime terrorism even rarer, the sheer magnitude of such an event is great enough to necessitate thorough preparation and security countermeasures.

Citing a report from the International Chamber of Commerce indicating that the type of ships they operate are the most common target of pirate attacks, the team determines they have an above-average likelihood of being targeted in such an attack. In terms of potential impact, Somali pirates have been known to extort millions in ransom and traumatize or even kill hostages.

While the likelihood of a jihadist attack is comparatively low, it still checks out as a significant risk when multiplied by the potential impact. And considering the still-unknown origin of the apparent attacks on two oil tankers in the nearby Strait of Hormuz earlier this month, maritime operators in the region should also be on high alert for black swan events, actively monitoring this breaking development and evaluating its implications.

  • IR No. 3: What measures should be implemented to manage the risk posed by physical security threats to our bulk carriers, personnel, and cargo during travel through the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea?

Across all use cases, the ultimate purpose of intelligence is to inform decisions, so it’s critical for physical security teams to close the loop by determining effective ways of managing the risks they face.

Returning to our example, our physical security team reviews industry- and situation-specific guidebooks and other resources, along with insights gained from sharing information with P&I clubs and other maritime shipping companies. These sources provide insight into proactive measures for bolstering defense, best practices when traveling through high-risk areas, and if an incident occurs, what should be done during and after an incident.

Step 4: Production

To leverage the insights gained in earlier steps to enhance defenses, physical security teams must take the outcome of their analysis to produce a formal security implementation plan, as well as supporting documents such as training materials, incident-response procedures, and stakeholder communications.

In our example, the shipping company’s physical security team produces a proposal for enhanced, multi-layered ship protection measures including enhanced lookouts, razor wire, stronger internal access controls, and strategically placed dummies to give the impression of having more crew members on patrol. In many ways, these measures parallel cybersecurity investments such as the creation of a security operations center (SOC) and CTI team, as well as the upgrades to network security controls.

The team also produces training materials for educating new crew members, establishes official protocol for responding to an attack, and conducts regular practice drills to ensure preparedness. This can be likened to the organization-wide implementation of security awareness training to educate employees on best practices like identifying phishing emails, avoiding suspicious links or attachments, checking email signatures, and vetting payment information when performing wire transfers.

Step 5: Dissemination & Feedback

The capital-intensive, action-oriented nature of physical security makes stakeholder buy-in particularly crucial, so it’s important for the materials prepared in the production stage to be received and consumed by their intended audience. In many cases, teams may need to revisit certain parts of the process to address stakeholder concerns or begin the process anew to address questions that are raised.

Returning to our example one last time, suppose that after company executives were concerned about the high cost of the team’s enhanced physical security proposal, our team gathered additional information to identify several ways to reduce the cost of implementation without compromising security. In addition, suppose that after crew members identified several flaws in the incident response plan, the team refined the process to run more smoothly.

Conclusion

Since all threats are dynamic, the intelligence cycle never truly ends, and teams must continually identify and investigate new or evolving threats. As criminal trends and geopolitical developments continue to pose physical security threats to organizations in a wide range of sectors, the intelligence cycle reinforces the critical yet often-overlooked importance of context and subject-matter expertise in addressing these challenges.

avatar

Ian W. Gray

Senior Intelligence Analyst

Ian W. Gray is a Senior Intelligence Analyst at Flashpoint, where he focuses on producing strategic and business risk intelligence reports on emerging cybercrime and hacktivist threats. Ian is a military reservist with extensive knowledge of the maritime domain and regional expertise on the Middle East, Europe, and South America. As a Veteran Volunteer, Ian supports The Homefront Foundation, a non-profit that helps veterans and first responders share their experiences through focused story-telling workshops. His insights and commentary have been featured in publications including Wired, Christian Science Monitor Passcode, ThreatPost, TechTarget, The Washington Examiner, Cyberscoop, The Diplomat, and others. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Middle Eastern Studies from Fordham University and a Master of International Affairs degree from Columbia University.

Flashpoint Intelligence Brief

Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up-to-date on our latest research, news, and events