Day in the life: Mark Ward
Job title: Chief Information Security Officer
Tenure: One year
Tell us a little bit about yourself
I am a father of two, Pierce 19 and Olivia 16 (going on 21..!). I am an Army veteran and have been working in security in various positions since leaving the Army in 1991 (wow, is it that long ago!). I keep myself active and am an amateur triathlete and member of the Army Triathlon and British Triathlon Associations. I also run a small triathlete team with my brother in law that runs one event a year to raise money for an organisation called All Call Signs.
In a nutshell, describe your role and how you support our business objectives?
It’s my job to ensure that all aspects of the company operate in a secure and safe manner. This objective is met by ensuring that we have effective policy, processes and procedures in place to ensure everyone knows what they should be doing and when. We are also responsible for ensuring the right security tooling and automation is in place, making it all as seamless as possible and with as little impact to the business as possible.
What does a typical day look like in your role?
I start the day by scan reading major news sites, the front pages of all the UK newspapers and several security specific news sites. Current affairs are very important to determine the varying threats to our business. On Mondays, Wednesday and Friday I have a briefing session with all the Heads of the security teams to ensure we are all updated on the activities underway in the teams.
What is on the cards for the rest of the year in your world?
This month we are running a Security Awareness Month for Three employees to ensure that everyone is aware of the actions that they need to be taking to keep themselves and our customers safe.
We of course have Christmas looming, so both physical and cyber security threats will be on the rise. We will be discussing the potential for increased measures with our retail store colleagues, and the Security team will be liaising with our suppliers and partners to ensure they remain vigilant across our digital estate too.
How are you finding hybrid working now we’re back in the office?
I fully support and embrace hybrid working in Three and the Security Team. I am usually in the office on Tuesdays and Wednesdays but also in on a Monday or Thursday as required. I find it works well overall, seeing people for meetings or 121s once a week seems to go down well with everyone, and face to face meetings for some of the more sensitive topics the team discusses, is important.
How have you supported your personal wellbeing during the past couple of years?
I like to keep myself fit in body and mind, so I run, cycle and open water swim (when the weather allows). Every year I organise an event to raise money for a not-for-profit organisation called All Call Signs that supports all servicemen and women and veterans, in their times of need. I also do what I can for that organisation to spread the word on the support available via the industry meeting and events I am invited to speak at from time to time.
Give us a fun fact…
I am obsessed with Great White Sharks… If you have been on a Teams call with me, you have seen one of my vast number of shark images. I have endless toys, pictures, wine glasses shot glasses, models etc. and even have a life-sized head of a Great White that would be 3m long if complete, on the floor of my home office!