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MainNerve Inc. names president, serves Vanguard Health
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The former top information security executive for both Gaylord and Willis is now president of a Texas company's new office in Nashville.

MainNerve Inc., an information-security technology and services provider based near San Antonio, has named Mark Burnette its central-region president, based here.

Burnette (at left) previously served three years as Gaylord Entertainment Company's executive director of IT operations and security, before layoffs hit the company earlier this year.

In an interview Friday, Burnette told VNC that Vanguard Health Systems is the company's anchor client in Middle Tennessee.

MainNerve does not disclose its earnings, but Burnette said the company now has nearly 20 employees in Texas, Arizona and Tennessee, and has generated revenue of about $6 million cumulatively, since its inception in 2001. Burnette now holds an equity position in MainNerve.

Asked about his competitive environment, Burnette told VNC he believes competitors include Brentwood-based LBMC Technologies; and, two Atlanta-based companies: IBM's Internet Security Systems (ISS); and, SecureWorks Inc., which has more clients in Middle Tennessee than IBM/ISS, according to Burnette.

Burnette, age 35, said he is confident MainNerve will gain ground, quickly, in its newly opened territory.  He explained that MainNerve's strategy has two primary elements:  First, Burnette contends, MainNerve's suite of both proprietary and open-source-derived products performs more information-security functions in one package and at lower costs than its competitors.

Second, he said, because demonstrating MainNerve's technology, its reporting capabilities and other features has consistently had tremendous impact on buyers who try it, the company plans to open Burnette's region with offers that include no charges for technology the first year of subscription.

In addition to business development, Burnette is MainNerve's lead for security, audit and compliances services, as well as for the company's proprietary Adaptive DarkNet™ Intelligent Defense.

The company says the DarkNet system is updated continually with intelligence about hackers and operators of hostile networks, allowing customer networks to route information flows away from systems already known to be compromised, without generating numerous false readings that often characterize other detection systems.

MainNerve's offerings include information systems vulnerability scans, penetration and intrusion tests, managed security services, antispam, content filtering and other services sold as a bundle.  The company argues that its technology and monitoring services reduce bandwidth demand caused by unauthorized traffic and content on the system; and, reduces information-security staffing costs.

Prior to joining MainNerve, Burnette briefly ran his CyBurnette IT Consulting Services; and, served nearly four years as global information security officer for Willis Group. Earlier in his career, he was manager of Deloitte & Touche's information security practice in Middle Tennessee; and, was a senior IT auditor for Ernst & Young.

Burnette is a former president of the Middle Tennessee chapter of the Information Systems Security Association (ISSA), and served several years as chairman of the annual InfoSec conference held by Nashville Technology Council.

He was chosen ISE 2005 Southeast Information Security Executive of the Year; was ranked among ComputerWorld Magazine's Premier 100 IT Leaders for 2009; and, was named one of the top seven security leaders for 2008 by Information Security magazine.

He also holds a string of certifications, including Certified IS Security Professional, Certified IS Auditor, Certified Public Accountant (CPA, Tennessee), and Certified Risk Professional.  He earned his B.S.-Accounting in 1996 at Carson Newman College, and his masters of accountancy with emphasis on information systems, at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, in 1997. Burnette, his wife and two daughters reside in Mt. Juliet.

"MainNerve," the corporate name, was apparently borrowed from a phrase that relates to computer intruders' or hackers' traits or signatures that help security experts identify them and deny, counter or thwart attacks on systems.

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Tags: Adaptive Darknet, Deloitte Touche, Ernst & Young, Gaylord Entertainment Company, IBM Internet Security Systems, information security, Information Systems Security Association, ISSA, LBMC Technologies, MainNerve, Mark Burnett, Nashville Technology Council, SecureWorks, Vanguard Health Systems, Willis Group

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