Palo Alto CEO Mark McLaughlin sat down recently to talk about a range of security issues with Network World Senior Editor Tim Greene. They discussed McLaughlin optimism about turning the tide on attackers, the evolution of his company’s next-generation firewall and how to secure the Internet of Things. Here is an edited transcript.
Can you talk a bit about why it is that you should not give up on being able to stop attackers, why it is possible to win?
If you start to think about what that means, we would have to be willing to assume that the banking system could be brought down to its knees at any time or the electric grid system or you can go through a host of chaotic outcomes, and that’s okay. … Look, if we’re unable to get to the point where we can do a high degree of prevention, it’s as if you and I would go home tonight and say to our families, ‘Somebody is going to break into the house probably every night. They’re going to walk around, they may take stuff, take whatever they want but they’re coming in any time they want to every day of the week and there’s really nothing we can do about that, so we just have to be OK with that.’ Nobody’s OK with that. So the point I’m trying to make is we’ll figure this out. We have to, because if we don’t the implications are unacceptable about how we choose to live.