Pentagon Cyber, Inc.: Humanizing Cybersecurity For Socio-Economic Development
Cybercrimes are estimated to cost Africa $4 billion annually, with ninety percent of African businesses operating without appropriate cybersecurity protocols.
When Mozambique was under a severe cyberattack, the government reached out to the United States for assistance. A former US Pentagon personnel referred the Mozambican authorities to global cybersecurity leader, humanitarian, and Pentagon Cyber, Inc. president, Dr. Charlene Coon, thanks to Mozambique business leaders, Abdul Neves, Zuneid Karim, and Blessed Uyo.
Having broken grounds working with and learning from the original FBI digital forensics cohort and Nic Chaillan (former US Pentagon official as US AF Chief of Software); having fought to improve cybersecurity R&D programs for US Presidents, NSA, CIA, FBI, and US nuclear efforts; and having led efforts to bolster cybersecurity postures worldwide; it isn't supersizing that Dr. Coon was asked about reducing Mozambique's cybersecurity risks . She questioned, "How do we change the trajectories of these nations and their citizens and make a difference?"
Driven by her benevolent impulse, Dr. Coon decided to help Mozambique and President Nyusi, and countries alike to enhance their cyber resilience.
This marked the commencement of Pentagon Cyber's journey as a catalyst for change in bridging socio-economic gaps in Third World countries with cybersecurity. It enables businesses and government entities to minimize their exposure to rapidly evolving cyber threats and steer dynamic security landscapes.
Blending Humanitarianism and Cyber Resilience
The increasing cyber crimes across the globe indicates that all organizations– irrespective of their size, operations, location, or objectives–are susceptible to cyber-attacks.
Dr. Coon and her team at Pentagon Cyber take the onus of helping these organizations navigate the ever-changing compliance narratives, reduce risks and vulnerabilities, and foster cyber hygiene. Dr. Coon is well versed in best practices and helps clients develop strategies, procedures, and training to identify attacks at early stages and build resilience against modern-day cyber threats.
Pentagon Cyber's team specializes in cybersecurity engineering, ISO 27001, risk management framework (RMF), CMMC, cost estimation, system and software testing, and more, enabling organizations to remain competitive and secure in today's attack-prone digital environment. The experts tenaciously assist at local, state, and national levels, and engage at congressional and layman levels to effectively implement custom-tailored cybersecurity solutions. The need is large; Pentagon Cyber is supporting $9.2B in African efforts.
Pentagon Cyber covers the gamut of cybersecurity and IT/ICT needs working with clients at every step.
Having worked in the Department of Defense, served on the internationally Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) advisory board, and founded Pentagon Cyber, Dr. Coon possesses deep insights into the various facets of cybersecurity and business. Her passion and social responsibility help her to empower others to surpass expectations and create social impacts.
“We Offer Our Cybersecurity Services In A Way That Generates Revenue For The Country, Enabling Them To Pay Back Loans And Also Have International Dollars Coming In”
Like the famous adage, "Give a man a fish, feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, feed him for a lifetime," Dr. Coon believes that helping Third World nations develop cyber resilience goes beyond implementing cybersecurity measures. It includes socio-economic development enabling countries to become self-reliant and championing innovation.
While in Mozambique, Dr. Coon witnessed professionals eager to develop and improve the country's cybersecurity strategies. Pentagon Cyber partners with corporate and individual training providers to train local professionals globally on managing IT/ICT and cybersecurity. It helps countries develop training programs and centers and assemble fully functional workforces capable of dealing with cybersecurity incidents and taking actionable steps to limit organizational liability.
Pentagon Cyber also helps new graduates secure internships and apprenticeships, setting out ladders to upskill. It has contracted with EC-Council as a training provider to offer certifications such as, EC-Council CEH and partnered with Belkasoft for DFIR training and software. Pentagon Cyber's endeavors transcend corporate boundaries as it helps local governments set up school systems, micro-business/telehealth/education centers, infrastructures, and digital solutions for promoting quality education. Pentagon Cyber identifies ways to raise funds, including financial aid from World Bank and USAID, R&D grants, crowd funding, and capital investments.
"We think out of the box and conduct brainstorming sessions to develop solutions and get funds for the projects that developing countries need," says Dr. Coon.
After using loans to improve cybersecurity resilience, developing countries often need help repaying them. Over the last few years, an alarming number of low-income nations have racked up tremendous amounts of debt and are at risk devastating economic consequences.
Armed with a passion for goodwill, Dr. Coon and her team are bringing a paradigm shift in this scenario.
Fostering Self-reliance and Community-wide Development
"We offer our cybersecurity services in a way that generates revenue for the country, enabling them to pay back loans and also have international dollars coming in," adds Dr. Coon.
Dr. Coon, with her humanitarian streak, has helped governments set up data centers, call centers, and IT infrastructure to go digital. Pentagon Cyber is engaging in conversations to set up underground sea cables to bring better Internet service to Mozambique. Pentagon Cyber helps governments synchronize their cybersecurity, digital transformation, and economic growth efforts, ensuring a collaborative approach.
"Mozambique is known for gems, gold, and oil, but the real gems in Mozambique are their citizens," states Dr. Coon. The connections she formed inspired her to promote conversations among citizens and government stakeholders to maximize human potential, nurture conversations, and create a space for innovation and community participation. The success of these initiatives can only be ensured when people come together.
Dr. Coon ensures this with her "boots-on-the-ground" approach, meticulously inspecting every facet of client operations. This way, according to Dr. Coon, one can identify hidden vulnerabilities.
We Are Building Legacies For Developing Countries And Changing Their Economic Trajectories
During the 2020 census, Dr. Coon led the efforts for the US Census Bureau in designing comprehensive cybersecurity systems and services for their hybrid Cloud environment supporting eighteen facilities across the US. Dr. Coon, working as the interim national site security director, frequently conducted floor checks in data and call centers and security operation centers to identify vulnerable physical endpoints for a potential data breach and implement safety measures.
Dr. Coon strongly believes cybersecurity profoundly impacts lives, businesses, communities, and the country's overall security. This is the impetus behind her hands-on approach to ensuring her clients identify imperceptible security vulnerabilities.
By virtue of these organization and community-centric services, Pentagon Cyber has gained massive traction from other countries attempting to embark upon their cyber resilience journey and go digital. It is currently establishing the World Business Development Association headquartered in Mozambique and is subcontracting to help different industries. Dr. Coon is working with Carlos dos Santos, Ambassador of Mozambique to the United States, to set up Action Tanks for industries. Others championing Pentagon Cyber's effort are former Ambassador Cindy Corville, African Union (AU); Otha Thornton, the first black NPTA president and a US White House staff member for Presidents Bush and Obama; family friends of Nelson Mandela; Fred Nyembue and Dario Pessa (Pentagon Cyber, Lda); Dr. Joshua Awesome (African Institute of Mind); Peter J. Merrick (https:// TheKingofMainStreet.com and https://wizio.com); Johnny Morney Jr. (The Morney Development Group); and Paul Evans (Auto Construction, modular building blocks). Pentagon Cyber is partnering with numerous investment companies to offer funding, training, and coaching services helping local business navigate bureaucracies and paperwork while establishing or expanding themselves.
"We are building legacies for developing countries and changing their economic trajectories," adds Dr. Coon.
Dr. Coon and her advocacy for technology-based socio-economic development will set the stage for Third World countries to counter cyberterrorism and become self-sustaining. Pentagon Cyber truly is an archetype of organizations impacting millions of lives with their humanitarian efforts.