In Red Team, national security expert Micah Zenko provides an in-depth investigation into the work of red teams, revealing the best practices, most common pitfalls, and most effective applications of these modern-day Devil's Advocates. The best practices of red teaming can be applied to the CIA, NYPD, or a pharmaceutical company, and executed correctly they can yield impressive results: red teams give businesses an edge over their competition, poke holes in vital intelligence estimates, and troubleshoot dangerous military missions long before boots are on the ground. But red teams are only as good as leaders allow them to be, and Zenko shows not only how to create and empower red teams, but also what to do with the information they produce.
Essential reading for business leaders and policymakers alike, Red Team will revolutionize the way organizations think about, exploit, compensate for, and correct their institutional strengths and weaknesses. Drawing on little-known case studies and unprecedented access to elite red teamers in the United States and abroad, Zenko shows how any group--from military units to friendly hackers--can win by thinking like the enemy.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2015-09-28
- Reviewer: Staff
Zenko, a security expert and fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, explains, in absorbing detail, the value of red teams, groups formed to act as devils advocates. While red teams are frequently used by the U.S. military, they are relatively new to the corporate world. Zenko shows just how these practices can help companies improve performance and identify failings. He advocates three specific techniques: simulations, vulnerability probes, and alternative analyses. He goes on to identify six red-teaming best practices (such as have a big bag of tricks and be willing to hear bad news and act on it). Zenko provides interesting examples of how U.S. intelligence agencies have used red-teaming, notably for topics related to homeland security. Shifting focus from the government and the military, Zenko looks at predatory competitive practices in a chapter that will hit home with every executive. From business war gaming to physical and cyber penetration testing, he shows just how vulnerable corporations are. He closes with a look at realistic outcomes and pitfalls to avoid. Armed with case studies ranging from the discovery of vulnerabilities in the Verizon network to the hunt for Osama bin Laden, Zenko offers readers much to consider and an effective way to take action. Agent: Geri Thoma, Writers House. (Nov.)