1st Edition

The CISO Playbook

By Andres Andreu Copyright 2025
    280 Pages
    by CRC Press

    280 Pages
    by CRC Press

    A CISO is the ultimate guardian of an organization's digital assets. As a cybersecurity leader a CISO must possess a unique balance of executive leadership, technical knowledge, strategic vision, and effective communication skills. The ever-evolving cyberthreat landscape demands a resilient, proactive approach coupled with a keen ability to anticipate attack angles and implement protective security mechanisms. Simultaneously, a cybersecurity leader must navigate the complexities of balancing security requirements with business objectives, fostering a culture of cybersecurity awareness, and ensuring compliance with regulatory frameworks.


    The CISO Playbook aims to provide nothing but real world advice and perspectives to both up and coming cybersecurity leaders as well existing ones looking to grow. The book does not approach cybersecurity leadership from the perspective of the academic, or what it should be, but more from that which it really is. Moreover, it focuses on the many things a cybersecurity leader needs to “be” given that the role is dynamic and ever-evolving, requiring a high level of adaptability.


    A CISOs career is touched from many differing angles, by many different people and roles. A healthy selection of these entities, from executive recruiters to salespeople to venture capitalists, are included so as to provide real world value to the reader. To augment these, many areas that a cybersecurity leader needs to understand are covered, from the pre-interview stage to the first quarter to security operations to the softer skills, such as storytelling and communications.


    The book wraps up with a focus on techniques and knowledge areas, such as financial literacy, that are essential for a CISO to be effective. Other important areas, such as understanding the adversaries mindset and self-preservation are covered as well. A credo is provided as an example of the documented commitment a cybersecurity leader must make and remain true to.

    Foreword. Preface. About the Author. Special Contributors. Acknowledgements. 1. Be the Candidate. 2. Be a Student of the Business. 3. Be a Builder. 4. Be a Risk Manager. 5. Be an Operator. 6. Be a First Responder. 7. Be a Team Lead. 8. Be an Executive Leader. 9. Be a Governance, Risk, & Compliance (GRC) Advocate. 10. Be a Measurer. 11. Be a Communicator. 12. Be a Vendor Manager / Negotiator. 13. Be an Effective CISO. Index.


    Andres Andreu, the Deputy Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at Hearst and a renowned cybersecurity leader, holds prestigious credentials including CISSP and ISSAP, and is a Boardroom Certified Qualified Technology Expert (QTE). With a diverse career traversing federal government, corporate sectors, and entrepreneurial ventures in cybersecurity, he is a mentor, startup advisor, and an acclaimed author.


    His government tenure includes a significant impact in lawful intercept technology within federal law enforcement, earning three U.S. Department of Justice awards for his contributions to drug law enforcement. Transitioning to the corporate realm, Andres made a mark at Ogilvy & Mather as a partner and Chief Application Architect, later consulting for high-profile entities like the United Nations. As a founding member and key executive at Bayshore Networks (acquired by Opswat in 2021), and former CISO at 2U, Inc./edX, his expertise has been pivotal in shaping cybersecurity landscapes.


    Andreu's leadership and innovative approaches have garnered him accolades such as a Top 100 CISO (C100) by Security Current, Top 50 Information Security Professional, and recognition in leading industry publications. His experience encompasses both offensive and defensive cybersecurity strategies, underpinned by a philosophy that balances executive and employee objectives.


    Author of “Professional Pen Testing Web Applications” (Wiley, 2006 - ISBN: 978-0-471-78966-6), contributor to “97 Things Every Application Security Professional Should Know” (O'Reilly Media, 2024 - ISBN: 978-1-098-15217-8), and articles with various magazines, his work extends beyond writing to inventing, with patents in cybersecurity innovations (WO2020069367A1, US20200193035A1). He advises the Forgepoint Capital Cybersecurity Advisory Council and serves on multiple advisory boards.


    A Cuban immigrant and proud American citizen, Andres balances his professional achievements with a happy marriage and four wonderful kids. He is an International level certified Judo coach with USA Judo, and an artist. Andreu's multifaceted career and personal achievements highlight his profound impact on the cybersecurity field and beyond.