Specializing in Cyber Law
Trained as an engineer, Violaine turned to cybersecurity very early on.
Very early in your career, you specialized in cybersecurity. What did you appreciate in our field?
Unlike some of my colleagues, I did not fall for IT as a child. When it was presented to me in engineering school, I found it interesting. At the time, we didn’t hear much about hacking; it was still very confidential. When my classmates talked about it, I found it extremely interesting, even as a neophyte. I followed this course without any preconceived ideas; there was no reason why I couldn’t do it. Today, I do not regret my choice. Computer security has taken on a predominant place; first of all because you have to protect yourself. For companies, it is as much a necessity as a moral obligation.
After your engineering degree, you joined Ernst & Young as an IT auditor. Can you tell us more about this experience?
At Ernst & Young, I carried out IT and security regulatory compliance audits. It was a great experience that helped me refine my career choice: in auditing, we could point out non-compliances but were not allowed to propose solutions. From this frustration was born my desire to do consulting.
In January 2016, you became a Senior Consultant and team leader for Orange Cyberdefense. What were your missions at the time?
I joined Orange Cyberdefense at its creation within the Consulting and Audit business unit. In 2016, this entity mainly carried out project management assistance missions, particularly on Identity and Access Management (IAM) subjects. I thus gained skills in more technical subjects. The dynamic was also stimulating already, Orange Cyberdefense was recruiting very varied profiles with entirely different experiences from mine. That’s exciting about being a consultant: you learn all the time, at all levels, and your progress primarily through contact with others.
When I was hired, I was hired as a team leader. I had already managed a team, and it was important for me to continue. Working with people, seeing them grow, evolve, leaving a certain shyness to gain confidence and autonomy are significant achievements.
What is your daily life like today?
First of all, I carry out consulting missions, particularly the compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), but not only. I also carry out other security missions such as organizational audits or support for information systems security managers (ISSM). The second part of my time is dedicated to managing my team of consultants and helping pre-sales: from the qualification of the customer’s needs to the formalization of commercial proposals.
You are the head of the “Cyber Law and Regulatory Compliance” division in France. Can you tell us more about it?
This department already existed before I took over. When the person in charge left, I offered my help. I also asked other consultants to be part of it, to recreate a group dynamic. Today, we are very active. We do a lot of monitoring of cyber law, create training materials for internal and external use, develop new offers to meet our clients’ needs as closely as possible, and finally, we are working on the creation of specific deliverables to save time for our consultants.
Do you work within a team?
I work a lot with my team; I love it. The best ideas come from comparing points of view. I am rarely alone on an assignment; I often bring a less experienced consultant with me, which helps us improve our skills. The transmission goes both ways; as consultants and managers, we have a lot to learn from the younger ones.
What do you like most about your job?
Human relations: being a consultant is above all about creating links with others, whether clients or consultants. Helping a client is also rewarding. We do a helpful job, which has meaning.
What would you say has been your most notable development within Orange Cyberdefense?
The arrival of my new supervisor was decisive. He gave me a lot of confidence, allowed me to take on more responsibilities, to express myself more. This made me grow and proved to me that what I was capable of. I was recently promoted, which is also a great proof of trust.
How did you get trained in law?
I took a training course financed by my former company. At the time, I worked in pairs with a lawyer, who also taught me a lot. I continued by learning on my own.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to become a Security Consultant specializing in Cyber Law?
I would advise anyone to be curious, know how to adapt, be reliable, and be rigorous. Also, to succeed in this job, you need to know that you don’t necessarily have to be an expert. Knowing how to analyze information and being logical are the keys to success.
How do you see your future?
I want to continue in cybersecurity, enjoy my work, and evolve in an environment that I like and that is intellectually stimulating.
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