In a dynamic and rapidly evolving sector such as cybersecurity, exceptional leaders play a crucial role in driving innovation and shaping the industry. By embracing innovation and cultivating a culture of creativity, leaders in the cybersecurity industry can stay ahead of the curve and drive long-term growth. However, it is important to recognize that many organizations lack sufficient cybersecurity talent, knowledge and expertise, and the shortfall is growing.
Acknowledging the importance of these trends, Yuri Diogenes stands out as a visionary leader in the cybersecurity industry, leaving an indelible mark through his expertise, commitment to education and relentless pursuit of excellence. With his contributions as an author, educator and manager, Yuri continues to shape the industry and inspire the next generation of cybersecurity professionals.
Yuri, Principal PM Manager at a renowned technology company-Microsoft, has emerged as one of the most impressive leaders in cybersecurity, making waves with his expertise and vision. With a career that spans over a decade, Yuri has overcome numerous challenges to reach his current position and has been impacting the industry through his extensive knowledge and contributions.
Let’s delve into Yuri driving forces that shape the cybersecurity industry and pave the way for future advancements!
Building a Solid Foundation
Yuri embarked on his professional journey at Microsoft in 2006, initially as a Support Engineer providing assistance for Microsoft Exchange Server. In 2007, he transitioned into the security domain, dedicating his efforts to supporting ISA Server, Microsoft’s Firewall/Proxy solution at the time. His experience in technical support laid a strong foundation, equipping him with a deep understanding of customer needs and product development lifecycle.
Yuri’s unwavering determination and belief in the power of networking allowed him to explore various opportunities beyond his daily job responsibilities. He ventured into technical writing, publishing articles about Forefront TMG and the evolution of the ISA Server. His visibility in the field led to his first book deal with Microsoft Press, releasing the ‘Forefront TMG Administrator Companion’ in 2010.
Following this, Yuri transitioned to the Windows Security team at Microsoft in 2011 as a Writer, focusing on articles about Windows security capabilities and countermeasures. A reorganization in 2012 led him to the Windows Networking Team, initially challenging his enthusiasm for cybersecurity. Nevertheless, he maintained his professionalism and pursued a Master’s degree in Cybersecurity from UTICA College from 2012 to 2014.
In 2014, Yuri’s pivotal encounter with the Dean of EC-Council University at Hacker Halted in Atlanta changed the course of his career. He embraced the opportunity to teach at their bachelor’s degree program in Cybersecurity and began a journey of education, inspiring new cybersecurity professionals and a published author (8 Books). Yuri’s passion for teaching and improving lives through education fueled his dedication to EC-Council University, where he has been recognized as Faculty of The Year for two consecutive years (2018 and 2019).
From Technical Writing to Leadership
Yuri’s journey in the cybersecurity field is a testament to his passion and determination. In 2015, he was allocated to a project that involved writing about a new technology aimed at enhancing cloud security. The product, initially known as Azure Security Center, was released in public preview at the end of that year. Yuri quickly became a public figure for Azure Security Center, contributing to its improvement and raising awareness through speaking engagements at large conferences.
Yuri’s expertise and dedication led him to publish three editions of the Azure Security Center book for Microsoft Press. In 2021, as the product expanded beyond Azure environments to encompass other cloud platforms like AWS and GCP, it was renamed Defender for Cloud. Yuri wrote a blog post to bring awareness to this change, highlighting the product’s multi-cloud security capabilities.
Driven by his passion for education and awareness, Yuri went on to create a Talking Show called ‘Defender for Cloud in the Field.’ Through this show, he interviews PMs and Developers to educate the audience about the product and its benefits. To further deepen his impact, Yuri released a new book about Defender for Cloud, published by Microsoft Press, providing valuable insights for professionals in the field.
Incentivizing the Deterrents
While leading the wave of awareness about the importance of cloud security, Yuri recognized the need to expand his impact and lead others to make a greater difference. He made a pivotal transition from an individual contributor role to a manager role at Microsoft, where he now leads a high-performance global team of PMs located in Ireland, India and the United States.
Managing a global remote team presents its own challenges, particularly due to different time zones. However, Yuri’s commitment to work-life balance and leading by example has enabled him to establish effective communication and support mechanisms. By setting a schedule that allows him to connect with each PM within their working hours, Yuri ensures that his team members feel valued and supported.
Throughout his career, Yuri has faced and overcome various challenges. He shares valuable lessons he has learned along the way:
- Staying motivated despite setbacks: Yuri emphasizes the importance of not allowing circumstances to dictate one’s mood. By adopting a mindset that sees oneself as a personal brand and the employer as a customer, he focuses on providing excellent service and maintaining a positive outlook.
- Embracing total ownership: Yuri encourages taking responsibility for one’s choices and outcomes. Rather than making excuses for failures, he advocates for learning from them and striving for continuous improvement.
- Cultivating self-discipline: Drawing from his experience of working remotely since 2011, Yuri emphasizes the significance of self-discipline in maintaining productivity and balance. By establishing boundaries and adhering to a well-structured routine that encompasses personal well-being, personal life and work, individuals can thrive in a remote work environment.
- Capitalizing on strengths when leading others: Yuri’s management style centers around recognizing and leveraging the strengths of team members. By focusing on individuals’ strengths rather than weaknesses, he has observed significant improvements in both performance and overall happiness within his team.
Advancing Technological Innovations for Resourceful Solutions
Recognizing the role of technology in reshaping the cybersecurity landscape, Yuri acknowledges the potential of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in addressing threats and enhancing incident response. However, he also understands the concerns surrounding AI’s impact on job security within the cybersecurity field. As a people manager and educator, Yuri emphasizes the need for cybersecurity professionals to evolve, combining technical expertise with a deep understanding of the business and interpersonal skills.
Yuri believes that alongside technical competence, soft skills will play an increasingly significant role in the future of cybersecurity. Building strong human connections and fostering teamwork is essential for creating a workforce that is invested in the company’s success and shared goals. While AI may automate certain tasks, the unique value brought by cybersecurity professionals lies in their ability to connect, adapt and bring holistic solutions to complex challenges.
Driving Change and Education
Yuri has had a profound impact on the dynamic cybersecurity industry through his expertise and extensive contributions. With 31 published books, most of which focus on Information Security, Yuri actively educates security professionals on utilizing security technologies effectively. His book ‘Cybersecurity – Attack and Defense Strategies: Counter modern threats and employ state-of-the-art Tools and Techniques to protect your organization against Cybercriminals’ achieved remarkable success, listed for four consecutive years as one of the top 20 best network security books of all time by Book Authority.
Yuri’s commitment to preparing professionals for the cybersecurity field led him to publish a new book, ‘Building a Career in Cybersecurity: The Strategy and Skills You Need to Succeed.’ This book, released in July, offers guidance on entering and growing in the cybersecurity industry, emphasizing technical skills and often-overlooked soft skills. As the demand for cybersecurity professionals continues to rise, with 3.5 million unfilled positions projected by 2025, Yuri’s contributions to educating and equipping professionals hold immense value.
Stepping into the Future
In the long run, Yuri aspires to continue making a difference in the cybersecurity domain by enabling professionals to achieve their potential. As a Principal PM Manager, he strives to provide his team with the necessary tools to excel in their careers while helping customers enhance their security posture. Whether managing a larger team or an entire organization, Yuri envisions himself contributing to a higher scale of impact.
As an educator and author, Yuri remains committed to educating cybersecurity professionals, ensuring they are well-prepared and equipped for success. He also aims to promote the inclusion of women in cybersecurity, fostering a more diverse and inclusive industry. Yuri’s dedication to continuous learning is evident through his pursuit of a Ph.D. in Cybersecurity Leadership from Capitol Technology University.
Yuri advises aspiring entrepreneurs venturing into the dynamic cybersecurity industry to invest in human connections. While technology, including AI, plays a crucial role, the power of human relationships and teamwork should not be underestimated. Building a team that is not only technically competent but also passionate about the company’s vision and goals creates a sense of belonging and purpose. In a world increasingly defined by remote work, Yuri emphasizes the importance of in-person interactions and fostering a culture where individuals feel connected and valued.