17 Cloud and Data Security Champions You Must Follow

Sharon FarberSharon Farber
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17 Cloud and Data Security Champions You Must Follow

Dig Security has curated a list of 17 prominent figures in the fields of cloud and data security who will ensure that your LinkedIn feed remains filled with captivating and insightful discussions.

Don’t forget to hit the follow button. 

1)  Dutch Schwartz

About: Dutch Schwartz is a Global Security Leader for AWS with a vast and impressive cybersecurity background which includes Forcepoint, F5, and Palo Alto Networks. Before venturing into the wonderous world of cybersecurity, Dutch is also a Veteran, with over a decade served in the U.S. Army as a combat arms officer.  

Why follow Dutch: Dutch is a Cloud Security Strategist at AWS and one of the most sought-after thought leaders when it comes to the topic of cybersecurity. His keynotes are must-attend sessions for all CISOs and cloud security experts. Dutch talks about all things cloud-related, from budget to culture, and has over 25 years of experience in the field. He is also a Hip Hop enthusiast and a big advocate of the role AI has in cybersecurity.    

Check out his webinar on The Cloud's Influence on the Evolving Culture of Security with Security Weekly

2) Anton Chuvakin

About: Anton’s impressive background includes nearly 8 years as a Research Vice President and distinguished Analyst at Gartner. He currently serves as Senior Security Staff at the Office of the CISO at Google. 

Why follow Anton: Anton is one of the most well-known and well-respected cloud security leaders. Among his areas of expertise include data loss prevention, log management, SIEM, and PCI DSS compliance, having authored numerous books on the topics of PCI Compliance and Log Management. 

Check out his latest Cloud Security Podcast on How to Stay Ahead of the Curve in Cloud IAM

3) Temi Adebambo

About: Temi is the Head of Security Solutions Architecture, in North America & EMEA at AWS. His posts reflect all things AWS, ranging from IAM to Amazon Security Lake, and new cloud features. Prior to joining Amazon, Temi spent over a decade at Deloitte as a Senior Manager of Cyber Risk Services, Serving as CISO for Deloitte’s Cloud Managed Services (OpenCloud). Temi also sits on The National Cybersecurity Society (NCSS) board of directors. 

Why follow Temi: Looking to stay up to date on the latest features AWS has? Temi keeps you constantly informed and “in the know” about AWS, straight from the company blog. He also posts live streams from major events such as re:Inforce, where he shares his thoughts with other companies. 

Check out his latest posts here.

4)  Ben Robbins 

About: Ben has been a Data Governance Product Manager at LinkedIn for nearly a decade, where he has helped pioneer their metadata management platform DataHub. Prior to joining LinkedIn, Ben had led digital forensics analysis, information risk management, and operational improvement at PwC.  

Why follow Ben: When it comes to thought leadership pieces on the topics of data compliance, data forensics, data protection, and just about all things big data, Ben will certainly keep you in the loop. His extensive background in data governance and eDiscovery has made him someone you most definitely want to follow. 

Check out his thought leadership piece on The Evolving Identity of Corporate Ediscovery and Information Governance here.

5)  Jo Peterson

About: Jo is the Vice President of Cloud and Security Services at Clarify360, a Digital Enterprise Consulting firm. She is also a member of the Forbes Technology Council and Hewlett Packard Enterprise Independent Analyst Council. Jo is also a Veteran of the United States Air Force. 

Why follow Jo: Jo knows cloud security quite well. She regularly hosts The Edge Podcast which features some of the best minds in the industry, talking about a variety of topics that range from cloud architectures to cloud integrations and Zero Trust. She has been featured in many thought leader lists and has even been ranked #7 as part of Onalytica’s Top 100 Cloud Influencers.

Listen to her insightful podcasts here  

6)  Ashish Rajan  

About: Ashish’s incredibly impressive resume includes hosting the popular Cloud Security Podcast where he holds a weekly livestream with the industry’s top minds. Ashish is a SANS trainer for Cloud Security and has helped many Fortune 500’s improve their cloud security strategies as an IANS Faculty member.  

Why follow Ashish: Google’s Cloud Security Podcast has nearly 12,000 subscribers on YouTube and is one of the best sources for cloud security information out there. Ashish is a major reason for its success, not only sharing his insights but also captivating his audience with fascinating topics that range from AI to Modernizing SOC. 

Check out his podcast on How CISO Cloud Dreams and Realities Collide, where he discusses the most challenging security issues for multi-cloud and hybrid cloud security with guest Rick Doten. 

7)  Cristophe Parisel

About: Cristophe is a Paris-based senior cloud security architect with over 16 years in the banking industry at Société Générale, where he specializes in IaaS, PaaS, DevSecOps and containers.  

Why follow Cristophe: Cristophe has extensive knowledge of the cloud. He has so many insightful thought leadership posts on his LinkedIn page that it is virtually impossible to list them all. Topics range from Azure RBAC Security to developing his own LLM integration and risk assessment card. Seriously impressive. 

Check out his Azure Cloud Security Meetup: Provable Cloud Security here.

8)  Walter Haydock

About: Walter Haydock is the founder and CEO of StackAware, which helps organizations manage AI-related cybersecurity, privacy, and compliance risks. Walter’s background includes serving as a Professional Staff Member for the Committee on Homeland Security, drafting Public Law 115-331, the Homeland Security Data Framework Act, and codifying government data-sharing processes. He also served as a Targeting Officer at the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) and is a USMC Veteran.

Why follow Walter: Walter speaks about data sharing, regulatory compliance, and protecting sensitive data in the cloud with a strong emphasis on AI. Walter is an expert leading voice when it comes to data security. If you want to understand how to protect your data and stay compliant, then Walter Haydock is someone you must add to your follower list.   

Check out his interview with the Champions of Security on How to Ensure Secure Governance for Generative AI here.

9)  JoAnn Stonier 

About: JoAnn has been at Mastercard for nearly 16 years, serving as the EVP, Chief Information Governance & Privacy Officer, Chief Data Officer, and presently as the Mastercard Fellow of Data and AI.

Why follow JoAnn: To say that JoAnn is an expert on data would be putting things mildly. She is a top industry voice when it comes to data strategy, data governance, and risk mitigation. JoAnn has been a part of many keynote panels and has contributed to major publications such as Forbes and CDO Magazine. A true data pioneer.  

Check out her thought leadership webinar on Applying Human Centric Design Principles to Data Problems here. 

10)  Rob Oden

About: Rob Oden is the Senior Data Security Specialist at Roblox. He was the Security Program Manager at Meta, leading initiatives related to Operationalizing Security for Privacy (S4P) compliance requirements. Rob is an expert on Data Security, Risk Management Frameworks & Compliance, and Enterprise Security Architecture.

Why follow Rob: Rob understands data very well. He has appeared on numerous podcasts and webinars going in depth around the subjects of data classification, advocating, and driving the adoption of policies, going in-depth on Why Highly Regulated Industries Need Secured Third Party Collaborations, a key panel discussion in which he presented with other industry influencers. We certainly suggest checking that out. 

Learn more about Rob's story and how he got into cybersecurity or listen to his journey on the Privacy Please Podcast here where he gets into threat models and architectural challenges.

11)  Ofir Balassiano

About: Ofir Balassiano is the Head of the Security Research division at Dig Security, with a particular emphasis on Cloud Security, underscored by his recent GCP vulnerability discovery. With over 10 years in the security domain, Ofir's journey began in the IDF, heading a team of key security technologies. Prior to joining Dig, Ofir worked as a senior researcher at XM Cyber, where he delved into the intricacies of Windows internals and EDR attack and defense mechanisms.

Why follow Ofir:  His expertise ranges from cloud and OS security to penetration testing, and his published research blogs offer insights from both offensive and defensive viewpoints. 

Ofir is a regular blogger on the Dig’s blog webpage. You can use the tag ‘research’ to filter for the most technical articles.

12)  Ben Rothke

About: Ben's vast and impressive resume features expertise in the areas of Information security and privacy, AWS Security, Security Risk Frameworks, and PCI Compliance. He is currently the Senior Information Security Manager at Tapad, part of Experian. He also worked as an independent IT consultant 

Why follow Ben: Ben is an expert on the topics of security governance, and risk management, and has even authored numerous books, including  Computer Security - 20 Things Every Employee Should Know, Network Security: The Complete Reference, and The Handbook of Information Security Management. 

Learn about The Multiple Personalities In Compliance & Audit Engagements and the 7 toxic personalities everyone should know about, hosted by Security Weekly.

13) Omer Singer 

About: Omer Singer is the VP of Strategy at Anvilogic. Prior to Anvilogic, Omer was the Head of Cybersecurity Strategy at Snowflake andVice President of Security Operations at The DigiTrust Group. 

Why follow Omer: Omer actively posts on LinkedIn and shares his tips on how to optimize data security in Snowflake and on SOC modernization. In fact, you can learn how to Normalize and Enrich Streaming Security Data in Snowflake with Dynamic Tables here. He is definitely someone you want to follow to enhance your data security knowledge. 

He frequently appears as a guest panelist on many security leadership webinars, including this masterpiece on where CISOs plan to invest in 2023, and where they plan to scale back which he did with Wiz

14)  Houston Hopkins

About: Houston Hopkins is Senior Security Engineering Manager at Robinhood. Prior to joining Robinhood, he was the Director of Cyber Intelligence at Capital One for 6 years and nearly 12 years at PepsiCo as the Global Active Directory Specialist. 

Why follow Houston: Houston frequently talks about #awssecurity, #cloudsecurity, #incidentresponse, #threatintelligence, and #detectionandresponse, so be sure to add him to your list of followers. He possesses a vault of knowledge when it comes to securing cloud environments and incident response. Oh, and speaking of that... 

Find out how to explain incidents to the board in his discussion on Incident Response in Enterprise from the AWS re:Inforce 2022, hosted by Cloud Security Podcast. 

15)  Anjali Gupta Reddi 

About: Anjali Gupta is the Chief Data Officer at Green Street. Prior to joining Green Street, she was Chief Data Officer at Dow Jones and was Global Data Governance Officer at Citi Commercial Bank. Before that, she spent 12 years at Dun & Bradstreet in a variety of data strategy and governance leading roles.  

Why follow Anjali: Anjali is a data powerhouse, specializing in the financial sector. She has made many influencer lists (not just ours), but in addition, has ranked #3 in DataIQ’s 100 Most Influential People in Data. Anjali combines her knowledge of data with AI/ML to build winning strategies. 

Hear her thoughts on The Future of Finance: A Deep Dive into Generative AI here. 

16)  Hans Vargas-Silva

About: Hans Vargas-Silva currently serves as a Data Protection Architect as part of Cybersecurity Governance at Marathon Petroleum Corporation. Hans was the Information Security Analyst for the State of India, where his contributions helped increase the visibility over threats for all state agencies.

Why follow Hans: From protecting the cybersecurity for the state of Indiana to being a highly sought-after speaker on the topics of data privacy and data protection, Hans Vargas-Silva is definitely someone you can’t help but follow. When he isn’t advocating data security, Hands can be found volunteering for numerous causes such as Team Rubicon (a disaster relief org), the Ohio Cyber Reserve, and humanitarian projects in his birth country, Peru.

Check out his appearance on Dark Rhino Security’s Security Confidential Podcast on Protecting Critical Infrastructure, where he talks about Cybersecurity, regulators' dilemma, and sharing security information with the Federal Government.

17)  Benjamin Benhan

About: Benjamin Benhan is eBay's Global Privacy and Infosec Attorney. Benjamin was also at PwC, where his specialty was Privacy and Data Governance. He is also a Member of the California Lawyers Association. 

Why follow Benjamin: There's no doubt about it, when you think of legal consequences as a result of a data breach, there is a very good chance that Benjamin Benhan already knows the cause and has a solution ready to go. Benjamin often shares very informative posts on data privacy and risk that truly make you rethink your data security strategy. He was also a featured speaker at this year’s Cyber Security & Cloud Congress North American expo. 

Check out some of his informative posts on data privacy here. 

And there you have it.

Did we miss someone? Please feel free to let us know. We’d love to hear your thoughts. 

Follow Dig Security to stay ahead of the curve for all things data security-related.

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