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  • Ahead in the Cloud: Cybersecurity in the Cloud-First Computing Era with Ofir Israel

    August 8, 2022
  • Ofir Israel, VP of Threat Prevention products at Check Point Software Technologies throws light on evolution and importance of securing the cloud. The discussion covers data processing in the cloud and prevention and detection of cyberthreats.

    This podcast is hosted by Chad Watt, researcher and writer with the Infosys Knowledge Institute.

    “Every change is an opportunity to rethink your strategy and cybersecurity is one of the main topics today for business organizations.”

    “Some people think it's okay to detect and alert and then deal with the threat. We believe prevention is key to a good and secure environment.”

    “To do cybersecurity right, to prevent threats, you need solutions that do hybrid work. You need the prevention on the agent and also use the cloud for the vast resources to inspect them.”

    - Ofir Israel


  • Check Point’s five minute survey showed that the vast majority of companies are not ready or didn’t tick the right boxes. Many lacked protection for email security, BYODs and endpoints.
  • It is crucial to have a cybersecurity strategy. When choosing a cybersecurity vendor, choose the one that gives you the strategy and the full solution for all security aspects.
  • Check Point is a cybersecurity vendor that develops products and delivers security. The cloud has enabled us in several ways. We have a large portfolio of cloud security solutions called CloudGuard, which which operates entirely in the cloud and protects cloud workloads. So, implementing security in the cloud and for the cloud is obvious in this product line.
  • As a vendor with a lot of track record in history, we have products whose production systems were migrated from on-prem data centers to cloud workloads. This was mainly for dealing with scale and efficiency, agility in changes, and all sorts of modern engineering gifts that the cloud provides. And all of our new products are developed in the cloud native way. So we leverage the cloud for the same engineering benefits that it gives to other companies.
  • Cloud enables more flexibility, scalability and resources to conduct inspection as compared to data centers and endpoints.
  • If cloud computing didn’t exist, then as a customer or as an enterprise, you would have had to buy many more appliances to conduct on-prem inspections. Now, with cloud, you can use the current appliances or install lower footprint agents on your endpoints and benefit from very sophisticated, resource-intensive scans hosted on cloud workloads.
  • We scan millions of files per day. We have more than 100,000 organizations that are secured by Check Point. So, we have a lot of data that goes through our cloud, resulting in a huge data set. These data sets are used to train our models to predict if the next file sample is malicious or not.
  • Processing in the cloud does have downsides. As a cybersecurity company, and unlike some of our competitors, we believe attacks can and need to be prevented. Some people think it's okay to detect, alert and then deal with the threat. We believe prevention is the key to a secure environment.
  • To implement cybersecurity in the right manner and prevent threats, you need solutions that support hybrid work. You need to protect the agent’s environment and also use cloud to inspect vast resources.

Show Notes

  • 00:06

    Chad introduces himself and Ofir

  • 00:30

    Ofir talks about his first computer and how secure it was

  • 01:40

    Ofir explains the state of cybersecurity when he was 18 years old and started working in it

  • 02:43

    Ofir talks about how the pandemic impacted cybersecurity standards

  • 04:04

    Chad and Ofir talk about today’s hybrid workplace (working from home and working from the office). What should businesses do to secure this new workplace?

  • 04:30

    Given the number of endpoints and BYODs, how are companies performing on the cybersecurity front now?

  • 05:17

    How do you get closer to ticking all of those boxes?

  • 06:20

    What does SOC stand for?

  • 06:33

    How does Check Point use cloud to add functionality or add more capabilities in terms of cybersecurity offerings?

  • 07:30

    What is distinct and different with cybersecurity products in the cloud? What do you need to do differently to develop those for cloud native?

  • 08:10

    Ofir talks about how the layers of security impact performance in cloud.

  • 09:46

    Ofir explains what proportion of Check Point’s clients are on-prem versus in the cloud.

  • 10:25

    Ofir talks about ML and AI.

  • 11:09

    How well is the model working? Ofir gives an example of how the model has improved over time as they collect more and more data.

  • 12:50

    How quickly do you reach a point with some significant new learning? Take the DNS tunneling, what’s the model that informed you and how quickly did you deploy that to clients?

  • 13:47

    How much of your data set do you share with others, and what is your stance toward sharing data with others that might make some use of it in their own models?

  • 15:20

    Is there any downside to using cloud for security?

  • 17:38

    Ofir explains what he does when he receives a really good phishing attempt.

About Ofir Israel

VP of Threat Prevention at Check Point Software Technologies

Ofir Israel

Ofir is Check Point’s Vice President of Threat Prevention. In his role, Ofir leads the product, research and development teams for Check Point’s threat prevention products including Network Cyber Security, Endpoint and Mobile Security, XDR and ThreatCloud. Prior to Check Point Ofir was Director of Engineering at Hyperwise Security and served 11 years as an officer in a cyber intelligence unit in the Israeli Defense Forces. He holds a Master of Science and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science, from the Reichman University (IDC Herzliya) and Tel Aviv University.