Governing Body Spotlight

Governing Body Member of the UK & Ireland CISO Community

Simon Langley



Simon Langley is the Chief Information Security Officer at ASDA. He spent the majority of his career in Big 4 consulting (specifically PwC twice and KPMG), initially as a Chartered Accountant performing statutory audits, slowly becoming more focused and technical, eventually becoming a security consultant mostly in Financial Services. Since then, he has been the CISO at Morrisons, Covéa Insurance and now ASDA.

Learn more about the UK & Ireland CISO community here.

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

I have always been fascinated by technology, but I initially decided not to spoil my love of technology by working in the field. It quickly became clear that I was wasting a lot of knowledge, so, I moved away from auditing into consulting, firstly in general technology but I gradually became more specialised. I developed a strong interest in cryptography and PKI and then information security. One thing led to another, and here I am.

What is one of your guiding leadership principles?

Build a great team and trust your people.

With disruption being a key theme of recent years, where do you see the CISO role going in the next 1-2 years?

I'd like the CISO role to be given more prominence and to report outside technology more than is currently common.

What advice would you give to someone just starting out as a CISO?

No organisation will ever be completely secure. Be explicit to executives about what is achievable (given the level of resources available to you) and what is not.

Tell us three fun facts about yourself.

  1. I was amongst the first batch of members of the public to be allocated an IP address after the first UK consumer ISP was started.  
  2. I used to keep pet rats, which are much more intelligent than people give them credit for.  
  3. I play the clavichord (gold star if you don't have to look that up).

What is the value of joining an Evanta community? 

Networking - hearing the perspectives of people both in my own industry (currently retail) and in others.

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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