Governing Body Spotlight

Member of the Toronto CISO Community

Omar Al-Assaf

Director and Information Security Officer (BISO) for the Americas

American Express

Omar Al Assaf, is the Director and Information Security Officer (BISO) for the Americas at American Express, responsible for the overall Bank's Information Security program planning and implementation. Omar has over 25 years of Information Technology experience in multiple industries at national and international levels, like the United Nations, Financial, Health, and Higher Education. 

Learn more about leaders in the Toronto CISO community here.

Give us a brief overview of the path that led to your current role.

In my professional career, I worked in multiple Information Technology domains, as a database developer, infrastructure architect, senior manager, and finally decided to utilize my experience and specialized in cybersecurity.

What is one of your guiding leadership principles?

Set the example.

With disruption being a key theme of the past year, where do you see your role as a CISO leader going in the next 1-2 years?

The massive move to work remotely for more than 60,000 staff globally due to the COVID-19 pandemic. My role will gain more visibility and importance due to the dynamic threats targeting the digital financial industry.

What advice would you give to someone just starting out in the role?

Know yourself and always seek self-improvement.

Tell us 3 fun facts about yourself

  1. I have visited 20+ countries.
  2. I speak four languages.
  3. My go-to show is Game of Thrones.

What is the value of participating in a professional community through Evanta?

Evanta is a great community that brings together the best of Canada's Information Security professionals. It provides an opportunity to exchange experiences, learn from industry-leading companies, network, and meet professional peers from different industries.



Evanta Governing Body members share their insights and leadership perspectives to shape the agendas and topics that address the top priorities impacting business leaders today.


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