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Expert Profile: Russ McRee

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As Partner Director, Operations for the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC), Russ McRee leads a global team of security incident responders and analysts charged with the responsibility to protect, detect, and respond on behalf of Microsoft infrastructure, services, and products. Today he shares his thoughts on the state of modern security.

Microsoft’s transition from a software-centric company to a cloud-first focus has driven a massive shift in the landscape of security, including the nature of vulnerability discovery and adversary actions.

“The symmetric, relatively uniform approach to resolving security issues in software and products is not consistent with the asymmetric, hyperscale nature of cloud services and operations,” McRee explains. “Providing security services at cloud speed and scale has changed how we track inventory, monitor and log, apply prevention, and respond in times of crisis.”

As he further considers the changes of the cloud computing era, McRee says that the MSRC has been more regularly engaged and on heightened watch than in prior years. He describes the MSRC as constantly evolving and scaling to new and interesting problems, always with attention and intent to solutions that are repeatable, sustainable, and viable.

So much has changed in the era of cloud of computing, McRee continues. Threat levels have increased significantly, and today’s adversaries are more cavalier and callous than ever before.

“Sharp, refined attention on identity security is the starting point for success. Prevent the theft and unauthorized use of credentials and secrets, combat social engineering with awareness and education, and above all else, ensure the use of effective, enforced, and ubiquitous multifactor authentication.”
Russ McRee  
Partner Director, Operations; Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC)

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