GCC and REBNY introduce standardized cybersecurity tool

Aug. 1, 2022
New best practices will help safeguard against growing cyber threats

(SANTA CLARA, Calif.—July 28, 2022) The GlobalCyberConsortium (GCC) and The Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY) and a group of cyber security experts from industry and academia have created a new Cyber Best Practices Questionnaire to help organizations evaluate and address cybersecurity threats. The questionnaire will initially be focused on the commercial real estate sector, but the GCC expects this to be the basis for a series of future questionnaires supporting a wide range of markets including health care, banking, and government. 

“A consistent set of rules and guidelines have been needed by a number of sectors in the building industry for years, and the establishment of the GCC is essential in creating awareness and establishing a level playing field for all involved in design and construction as well as ownership and operations,” said Walter Mehl, Managing Partner of Jaros, Baum & Bolles. 

The GCC started meeting virtually in 2020 with a diverse group, including end users, consultants, integrators, individual cybersecurity professionals from leading building system companies, and academic leaders, focusing their research on topics related to cybersecurity.

“One of the challenges for vendors of products which are connected to building systems is the lengthy questionnaires which must be completed to address cybersecurity issues,” said David Bunzel, co-founder of the GCC.  “These surveys often have similar questions, but are phrased and organized differently, making each review custom, unique, and time-consuming.  The GCC hopes to streamline, simplify, and establish a consistent format to make this process more efficient and reduce costs associated with this exercise. “

“Given the growing frequency of security intrusions and cyberattacks, there is an increased need for suppliers and vendors to be on the same page as their customers, in a very literal way. The industry-wide adoption of a standardized questionnaire will allow for more efficient solicitation for building projects and more regular security assessments,” noted Jack Ryan, Founder and CEO of Last Lock. .

“Managing the questionnaire process is a real pain point for building system vendors and suppliers of products which are connected within a company,” said Min Kyriannis, a co-founder of the GCC.  “Vendors have long asked for simplified and standardized questionnaires which can provide significant efficiencies and savings across the board.”

“Improving cybersecurity industry standards is key to our overarching goal to help transform the real estate experience through technology,” said Sandy Jacolow, Chief Technology Officer at Empire State Realty Trust and Chair of the REBNY Cybersecurity Committee.As new innovations in PropTech, the metaverse, blockchain and other technologies are adopted, we must make sure that the cybersecurity practices of vendors and portfolios keep pace. This questionnaire will help evaluate that progress.”

For more information on the Cyber Best Practices Questionnaire, please use the following link.

About the GlobalCyberConsortium

The GlobalCyberConsortium (GCC), incorporated in 2021, is a group addressing the need for simplified and standardized questionnaires for the cybersecurity industry.  Its participants include the leading building systems companies, industry subject experts, and academics that are focused on cybersecurity. 

About the Real Estate Board of New York

 The Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY) is the City’s leading real estate trade association. Founded in 1896, REBNY represents commercial, residential, and institutional property owners, builders, managers, investors, brokers, and salespeople; banks, financial service companies, utilities, attorneys, architects, and contractors; corporations, co-partnerships, and individuals professionally interested in New York City real estate.