CIO50 2019: #24 Ken Soh, BH Global
As Chief Information Officer of BH Global and founding Chief Executive Officer of Athena Dynamics, Ken Soh has a unique take on Singapore, and the wider Asian market.
The wearing of two hats - one a SGX-listed company and the other, a spin-off start-up subsidiary - has created an executive possessing “dual personalities”.
In essence, Soh is an “end-user in the morning and a vendor in the afternoon”.
Soh joined BH Global as CIO in 2014, a solution provider serving marine, oil and gas, industrial, petrochemical and commercial industries. Founded in 1965, the business specialises in supply chain management, design and manufacturing, surveillance and cybersecurity and engineering segments.
During his five-year tenure, Soh spearheaded the introduction of a “digital culture” internally, triggered by the implementation of a B2B store and the streamlining of a group-wide enterprise resource planning (ERP) platform.
The organisation also revamped enterprise network and security capabilities, transitioning into a subsidiary company named Athena Dynamics supplying critical info-infrastructure [CII] protection products and services to government and CII owners in Singapore and the region.
Created in 2014, Athena Dynamics specialises in the delivery of cyber security solutions, with a deep focus on CII and enterprise IT operation management products and services.
Alongside the usual ITOps, DevOps and SecOps functions, Soh said core innovation comes from the “implementation of unusually innovative cyber security technologies”, deployed to “effectively fill the gaps” that mainstream solutions fail to address.
The innovation was built on the notion of detection-less protection and detection-less prevention.
According to Soh, most cyber security tools today are “caged in the paradigm of detection”. Yet breaches continue to happen because businesses struggle to detect advanced threats in the first place.
Hence the change of approach and discovery of “innovative detection-less” protocols to not only strengthen the company’s cyber posture but transform a “cost centre into a profit centre” through the creation of a dedicated security subsidiary.