I never know whether to believe IT vendors when they tell me that they’re serious about security. After all, as Mandy Rice-Davies famously put it: “Well they would say that wouldn’t they”. So I was very pleased when Microsoft recruited ex-FBI Special Agent Ed Gibson in a high profile security role. Because I know that Ed wouldn’t work for an organisation he didn’t believe in. When Ed speaks – as he did rather eloquently at this week’s NISC8 Conference – you can tell it comes from the heart. It’s not company-speak and he doesn’t pull his punches. And that’s the best way to manage PR in today’s highly-connected Web 2.0 World. Smart companies listen to – rather than gag – their employees. And that way, as Mandy Rice-Davies also put it, they may one day be able to look back on their life as “one long descent into respectability”.