How an FBI agent transformed Microsoft security

In time for Infosecurity 2009, IT PRO talks to Edward Gibson, one of the main figures behind Microsoft's computer security in Britain.

"Legally [the mail operators] didn't have to comply because the servers aren't in the UK, but I'm happy to say that [Microsoft] voluntarily complied."

FBI and Microsoft

Gibson said that Microsoft, being a tech company, focused on putting out things like hardware and software, whereas his focus was on criminals and complex cyber criminal cases.

It had never hired anyone like Gibson before, a man who worked for a world-renowned law enforcement agency, and the former special agent said it took time to figure out why he was there.

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"The transition from the FBI to Microsoft wasn't easy for me," Gibson says. "It wasn't because of Microsoft but more because I couldn't let go of a job I absolutely loved."

However, Gibson said that it was the right appointment at the right time, as he had spent a lot of the time at the US embassy developing relationships with government and law enforcement contacts.

"I was the single point of contact for all law enforcement and security services in the UK for five and a half years in anything to do with cyber work."

He said that at the time, Microsoft needed somebody with the presence and credibility, as well as an understanding of the criminal element in the cyber world.

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