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The Secure DeveloperThe Secure Developer

Ep. #78, Approaches to Security from Across the Industry with Sacha Faust, Amazon Payments

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Today, we’re going to explore approaches to security at companies of different scales with Sacha Faust, Head of Security Intelligence at Amazon Payments. Sacha has held numerous roles in security and development across the industry spectrum, and we kick things off hearing about his journey in the space. The first part of the episode is about the difference between security engineering at startups versus established companies and Sacha weighs in on his experiences at Lyft versus Azure and Amazon. At Lyft, Sacha’s approach was all about empowering teams and taking advantage of the fast-growing environment to build things into the company’s fabric. In contrast, teams are bigger and processes more established at larger firms, and Sacha talks about the depth versus breadth-focused approach required. Here we explore what it means to go deep on a bug, hearing Sacha’s ideas about learning from bug failures so you can make an impact you can measure, and the complexities of truly fixing something. We move on to the subject of Sacha’s time as a developer next, and he talks about the lessons he learned about the intricacies of that world and the empathy they gave him when he switched back to engineering. His empowerment-first approach was very much born during that time as was his belief in the value of diversity of experience for building one's career as well as one’s teams. For insights into security work at different scales and a few gems about the people side of security from Sacha too, be sure to tune in.

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