Welcome to Sightline’s Blog

Welcome to the first Sightline Security blog post! With so much happening across the cyber and information security space, we are looking forward to keeping you in the loop about security in the nonprofit sector. Each week we will post news and information from work with our nonprofit members, insights into how we are translating the complexities of cyber and information security into the nonprofit language of the work, and discoveries we are making here at Sightline.

But before we started, I wanted to take the opportunity in this first post to share with you how Sightline came to life and how excited I am for the incredible possibilities ahead. I want to keep you up to date on all that is going on here at Sightline. So what can you expect from us? So, where to start? Let's start at the beginning. Many people asked how Sightline got started so let's begin with a bit of history.  

In 2016, when I was completing my dissertation, I wanted to dig in and understand why cybersecurity seemed to be a low priority within the nonprofit community. Was it too overwhelming? Was the language of security out of reach? Did they think it didn't affect them? Or did they lack the resources?

Those questions inspired Sightline. Simply put, Sightline was founded because we wanted to find a better way to engage with nonprofits to help them improve security in a sustainable way, not just a quick fix. We knew that if we took a step back from our security-centric viewpoint and considered how these organizations operate, how they talk, and what's important to them, we could realign the conversation and then security solutions so that it would make more sense and align better with what matters most to them -- their mission.

Yes, cyber and information security are complicated, but that doesn't mean they are insurmountable challenges. Sightline's goal is to make it easier – remove hurdles and encourage better understanding – both from the nonprofits that need to protect themselves and, just as importantly, and the vendors and experts who, with a bit of education, can help these organizations attain their missions, regardless of an organization's size or resources.

After many conversations, more research, and mindful thought about whether we could make a genuine difference and help improve security in nonprofit and mission-based organizations, in 2018, Sightline Security, the Boston-based, 501(c)3 nonprofit, was formed. We knew then, as we know now, that there were no easy answers to the questions we were asking and that, in many cases, we were blazing the trails. We are the nonprofit sector's voice at security conferences, on podcasts, in the security community. But that's OK. We, the collective Sightline family (myself, the team, our board of directors, and our incredible advisory council), are up for the task. Personally, Sightline, in many respects, is what I was always meant to do. And I'm fortunate that others feel the same way.

Nonprofits, mission-based organizations, and many others falling below the poverty line of security needed help – they didn't understand security, and the security industry didn't understand nonprofits. Today, Sightline is THE nonprofit cybersecurity expert. We are helping them build security into their organizations, making it part of their standard operations. We are making the world a safer place, one nonprofit at a time.