Skydio’s new security chief Jeff Horne



Skydio's new security chiefCybersecurity for Drones: In an introductory blog post, Skydio’s new security chief Jeff Horne explains why he believes data security is essential for the future of autonomous systems.

by Ian M. Crosby, editor-in-chief of DRONELIFE

Skydio, America’s leading drone maker and leader in autonomous flight, recently appointed Jeff Horne as its new head of security.

Horne, who began his security career with Internet Security Systems in Atlanta at the age of 18, has been heavily involved in solving a multitude of cybersecurity issues over the course of his career, ranging from Scan for security vulnerabilities through patch differentials and more reliable exploit creation, looking for antivirus engine and detecting malicious code. Horne was a security consultant for several years, helping large corporations deal with security breaches involving malicious code. “Often in these cases I found myself in a position to lead their security operations on an interim basis – a position that I really enjoyed – and ultimately decided to step down from the board and pursue security leadership.” , Horne said. He has since served as chief security officer for companies such as SpaceX and Optiv.

“My years in the industry have shown me that strong cybersecurity must be at the heart of any business values, which is even more true when it comes to drones,” said Horne. “As drones have grown from consumer toys to essential tools for infrastructure and national security, we are seeing a growing demand for reliable solutions. This is particularly relevant as the cybersecurity and privacy requirements of mature and highly regulated industries are now spreading to the cloud and security models like the zero trust architecture are rapidly adopted. “

When he first met Skydio, Horne said he knew the company had something special: “A future where autonomous technology transforms industries is on the horizon, but the vast majority of companies working in this area are on the horizon. space have not yet passed the theoretical stage to become practical, customer-ready innovations. At Skydio, that future is already here.

“At Skydio, we make drones useful by making them smart. And our vision is to evolve the industry from inefficient manual operations to remote-controlled drones as a service hosted in docks around the world, capable of delivering valuable services around the clock. But we also know that the safety of operators. data is essential to realizing the promise of these self-sustaining operations, and U.S. businesses like ours can deliver higher levels of data security to businesses and public customers. This is why I am so happy to join the team as the new Skydio Security Officer.

Combining innovative technology and enhanced security, Skydio creates drones that inspire regulators’ confidence. All of the company’s products are designed, assembled, and supported in the United States, and the software is developed in-house with core processors from American companies. By being so closely involved in the process at every step, Skydio is able to offer a high level of supply chain security and earn the trust of its customers.

One such example is the Skydio X2, which is designed with cybersecurity in mind, providing signed and encrypted vehicle firmware, encrypted storage, and data link encryption.

“The only way to trust a connected device is to trust the manufacturer and the legal framework in which they operate,” says Horne. And Skydio certainly appears to have earned that trust, with the US Department of Defense concluding that the company’s defense and enterprise products meet the supply chain security requirements required by Congress in the National Defense Authorization. Act (NDAA). Due to its trust in the company, the Department of Defense selected Skydio X2 as the trusted drone platform for the Defense Innovation Unit’s Blue sUAS program.

“I knew I wanted to work for a company that had a great, easy-to-use product that could help keep people safe and make their jobs more efficient. And from my very first meeting with Skydio, it was obvious that the team also had something else that means a lot to me: passion. In addition to being highly skilled and technical, the teams are passionate about their work, dedicated to product improvement and committed to truly helping our customers deliver on the promise of autonomous drones, ”explained Horne.

“Leading both cybersecurity and physical security teams comes at an exciting time for the business and the industry itself,” he concluded. “I am delighted to be working with the team to develop the next generation of security protocols for autonomous drones and to ensure that Skydio continues to be the leader in cybersecurity. “

Learn more about Skydio drones, the autonomy platform, the next phase of the Blue sUAS program and the Skydio X2 platform.

Ian attended the Dominican University of California, where he obtained a BA in English in 2019. With a long-standing passion for writing and storytelling and a keen interest in technology, he now contributes to DroneLife as editor.


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