Cyber security is the number one problem for most organizations nowadays. According to new statistics the cost of cybercrime increased to $400 billion worldwide in 2014, and about one million attacks occurred every day in 2015. National Cyber Security Alliance estimates that around 60% of businesses close in the six months after a cyber-attack. What’s more, human error is estimated to cause 37% of all those security incidents.
In May 2016 Ali Payani submitted his theory, as defined in his master thesis, presenting a new and revolutionary approach to IT security. Payani’s research shows that the human factor, which is often seen as a disadvantage in IT processes, can be used to our advantage, and if applied appropriately can actually lead to stronger security – the number of security incidents could decrease by over 60% in one month.
In his progressive paper, Payani applied a humanistic approach to IT security, he employed Lewin’s behavioral change model – using the human factor in the security process as means to strengthen and improve IT security in any organization.
Payani points to three stages in the security change process. In his research Payani firstly proves that instead of forcing employees to blindly follow the rules, they should be made aware and fully understand why there are rules in place and how following them can improve security. Following that, employees should be supported and motivated to see the importance of new practices and apply new behaviors which can be reinforced by discussion groups where employees can share their experiences. Lastly, when the new security policy of the organization is introduced to all employees, management should provide stability after the changes have been made so that the security policies become the new norm. This can be further helped by showing the employees the effectiveness of the new polices and their own new behaviors.
But can this really be done in practice?
Payani has tested his model in a customer technology company and the results were visible within a month – there was a significant decrease in security incidents, falling by over 60%. The employees’ willingness to follow security procedures, on the other hand, has increased by over 50%.
In his paper Payani explains in great detail how such a model can be applied in practice and what tools companies can use to conduct a successful change.
Ali Payani himself is an innovative entrepreneur and forward-thinking computer scientist. Cyber security is just one of his many projects. He started his first company at the age of 13 when he when he received his first certificate for web design and programming, and his father encouraged him to put his skills to use.
Payani’s new company in the U.S is already making an impact in the American technology circles – his revolutionary ideas met with a great interest from incubators, venture capitals and angel investors, and resulted in numerous invitations to conferences such as Persian Tech Entrepreneur – UBER in San Francisco and several talks about developing the project further in the U.S.
From a young age Payani has successfully taken part in numerous competitions including the Du Student InfoSec award, Cyber Security Awareness. He ranked second at Gitex Technology Dubai 2013 and won a 2nd place in the Gulf Programming Contest.
Despite his young age, Payani has already made an impact in the technology and IT world. Thanks to his innovative entrepreneurship and successful performances in technology and programming championships, in 2014 Payani was invited to be a speaker at the IBC Seminar in Dubai 2014, making him one of the youngest speakers at the conference.
About Ali Payani:
In 2013 Payani graduated from the University of Wollongong with a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science in Digital Systems Security, and three years later he received a Master’s degree in Information Technology Management from the same university. Despite being given numerous job offers before even graduating Payani decided to follow his passion for helping people and decided to focus on his new project – applying artificial intelligence to solve real problems that people face today. His first design is an intelligent and fully customizable air pollution measuring device helping people prevent asthma attacks.
He worked as a Teaching Assistant at the University of Wollongong between 2013 and 2015, as well as a Robotic Instructor at Create. In both of those roles Payani was not only teaching students to improve their programming skills but was showing them how to develop their passion for science to create real projects.
Payani’s scope of interest is exceptionally wide – his passion for science, technology and learning are not his only interests. He is a self-taught pianist, won the Teheran Chess Championship in 2003 and was a basketball player on the national Iran basketball team, to name just a few.
Company Name: Fortment
Contact Person: Ali Payani
Address:5500 Lindley Ave
Country: United States