Dan Meacham, a Valencia resident and director of IT Security for Trident USA Health Services, was recently named Cybersecurity Leader of the Year by the Los Angeles Business Journal.
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The LABJ announced the winners of the annual Los Angeles CIO Awards during a reception at the Century Plaza Hyatt on Wednesday. The categories included chief information officers for corporations, emerging businesses and nonprofits, among others.
This was the first year that cybersecurity was added to the list of categories.
“It has to do with the fact that data protection and cyber security are becoming more and more important and more relevant for companies,” said Mary Kaminski, events manager for the Los Angeles Business Journal. “…The great thing about running these awards is we do have a flexibility to create more categories, expand on the awards.”
But Meacham didn’t expect to be the first one to win in the new category.
“It was really big surprise for me that I actually won it,” Meacham said and mentioned the other top CIOs who were nominated for the award.
Meacham has more than 15 years of experience in computer and cyber security for a number of large companies.
His extensive resume includes positions with Aramark, Capgemini Consulting, Zale Corporation, Baylor Health Care System and KPMG.
Meacham moved to the Santa Clarita Valley in 2010 and has since made an impact on the greater L.A. area.
He has served on an advisory committee for the UCLA Extension Certificate in Information Security program and assisted with the CyberDefense competitions at Cal Poly Pomona.
During his years in IT, computer and data security has changed tremendously, Meacham said.
The development of cloud-based computing has allowed smaller businesses to access expensive programs that support their email, accounting and payroll, which they otherwise would not have been able to afford.
This means that a company’s data could be housed in servers across the world, Meacham said.
Protecting that data, then, means so much more than installing a firewall on each computer.
Cybersecurity employees now must be experts in protecting passwords and entry points to their systems, international privacy laws, tracking a security breach to its source and understanding how social networks use data.
Currently, Meacham is also in talks with College of the Canyons about the future of their cyber security program, he said.
Meacham said that he was proud to represent the Santa Clarita Valley during the LABJ awards ceremony.
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Source: Santa Clarita News