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Putting Trust First: The Power of Cybersecurity

Kaycee Oyama

April 28, 2023

When we use our phones, computers, or any technology, we trust them to keep our information secure. Trust is a core value at Salesforce and our security team plays a massive role in maintaining that. As Director of Security Engineering, Krishna Pandey, CISSP, CCSP works to keep our data and our customer data safe.

Growing up without the internet

Krishna at the office with Codey and Einstein

As a child, Krishna grew up in a small town in Bihar, India, and his only escape to the outside world was through TV, where he had two favorite shows. The first was about Indian soldiers protecting the nation, which led him to his childhood dream job of becoming an Indian Army officer. The other series focused on people using advanced technology to achieve a malicious agenda.


Ultimately, both shows proved how good can defeat evil through noble intentions, perseverance, and grit. Some might say that’s exactly what Krishna does today, working to protect data from anyone with ill intentions.


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Discovering the power of cybersecurity

Krishna began exploring cybersecurity in his third year of university when he became curious about computer networks and how the Internet works. “I started digging more into network security and threats associated with public networks [and became interested in the] Intrusion Detection and Prevention System (IDS).” IDS is an automated software designed to alert users about a potential security incident.


In one of his first roles after graduating, Krishna served as a staff scientist for the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing of India, where he encountered real-life security issues. “This was the first time I got to experience intruders and a breach. My responsibility evolved to securing national projects spread across national data centres, and I decided to go full-time into the cybersecurity domain.”


He worked hard to get his master's degree and multiple certifications, transitioning his role and becoming a security architect.


Finding a home at Salesforce


Krishna and the Security Engineering team

Now, as Director of Security Engineering securing Salesforce and its ecosystem, Krishna is grateful to work at a company that puts trust first. “I was very selective about where I wanted to work. I made a short list of companies and reached out to my network to find out more. When I interviewed at Salesforce, everyone I talked to was happy to be there. They explained core values, VTO opportunities, V2MOM, and the 1-1-1 model, which helped me decide to join Salesforce.”


While Krishna admits it can be tough to stay ahead of infrastructure attacks and simultaneously strengthen the network, he's able to make swift progress on security measures due to Salesforce's emphasis on trust. “It’s really rewarding to work in a company where security is an important pillar. Salesforce takes it to next level by publishing service availability and performance metrics to our public-facing trust website.”


When asked what the best part of his job is, Krishna says, “I get a sense of pride and accomplishment in securing Salesforce and its ecosystem, which will create 9.3 million new jobs and $1.6 trillion in new business revenues worldwide by 2026 — as per a new study by IDC. At Salesforce, engineering and operational excellence are strictly followed and trust metrics are continuously monitored. That’s something I haven’t experienced in my career before.”

“I felt confident that Salesforce would take care of me and help me develop the necessary knowledge and capabilities needed for the role.”

Empowering communities

As a leader in cybersecurity, Krishna gives back in many ways. He feels security awareness is paramount and contributes to local security communities in Bangalore. He previously served as President of the Bangalore chapter of the nonprofit (ISC)2 for three years, contributing to their mission of creating a safe and secure network for all. Krishna also shares his knowledge by speaking at various big data and cybersecurity conferences.


One of the core values Krishna identifies most with is Salesforce’s newest value, sustainability — giving back to the community and the planet. “I am a nature-loving person and it’s really important for me to live on this planet with future generations in mind. Salesforce initiatives like Net Zero Cloud and our philanthropic 1-1-1 model make me feel good about working at Salesforce.”


In addition to this, he takes time to lift others up, mentoring women and veterans trying to break into the cybersecurity domain. In the future, he plans to give back through India’s newest employee resource group, Vetforce, which is made up of veterans, families of service members, and allies passionate about supporting our military.


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