ISACA South Africa Chapter hosts its first Virtual Annual Conference

Johannesburg, 26 Aug 2020
Read time 7min 40sec

The Information Systems Audit and Control Association South Africa Chapter (ISACA SA Chapter) held its first virtual annual conference entitled: ‘Thinking Digital’ on 3 and 4 August 2020.

The opening address was delivered by Arlene-Lynn Volmink (President) who extended a warm welcome to the first online conference within ISACA South Africa’s 28-year history. Volmink highlighted the significance of this year’s theme: ‘Thinking Digital’ and how this was the outcome of a brainstorm session by the Conference Committee of the previous Board of Directors from a year ago. The theme remained appropriate given the pivot that organisations across the world have had to make to embrace digital solutions in response to the COVID-19 world pandemic.

Volmink noted the conference was the flagship event of the ISACA South Africa Chapter and featured multiple industry experts and thought leaders. Through this event, the Chapter’s objective was to contribute to the knowledge base that promotes leadership in technology, information and cyber security, as well as governance, risk and innovation in South Africa. The aim was further to unlock critical and new thinking, encourage innovative ideas and set a platform that provokes collaborative conversations with action planning around a digital agenda that has been fast-tracked under current circumstances.

Over 340 delegates were positively engaged throughout the conference with a chat facility, mobile application and activity across various social media channels. Delegates included all members of the ISACA South Africa Board of Directors, past presidents of the Chapter who were special invitees to the event, representatives from other professional bodies and other ISACA chapters, as well as practising professionals from both private and public sectors and from different parts of the world.

The production and back-office administration took place from physical studios in Cape Town and Johannesburg, while most speakers and delegates accessed the event from the comfort of their homes. The ISACA South Africa Chapter is appreciative of the enormous effort of the production team, which included staff, volunteers and the Board of Directors. Several engaged staff members were present at the event to co-ordinate and arrange all proceedings. These included Esther van der Walt (Finance Manager), Anri Veldman (Marketing and Events Coordinator) and Eugene May (Education and Training Coordinator). The volunteer members included Mogammad Gierdien and Rowan Parkerson, who also hosted the event.

The speaker line-up over the two-day main event featured industry leaders who provided the audience with insights, risks, benefits, challenges and the solutions to help us overcome these in a digital era. Featured speakers included:

  • Antoine Paillusseau (CEO and Co-Founder at FinChatBot): “Conversational AI for the financial services industry”
  • Craig Rosewarne (Managing Director at Wolfpack Information Risk): “Using cyber security to address the seven deadly business sins”
  • Max Blecher (Founder and Managing Director of Virtual Alliance): “'Digital thinking’ is redefining normal – and we really need to care!”
  • Anna Collard (Managing Director of Popcorn Training/KnowBe4 Africa): “Findings from KnowBe4 Africa's Cyber Security Awareness Report”
  • Ziyanda Masiza (Business Consultant and Coach): “The profession goes digital like all others – so what?”
  • Adrian Schofield (Programme/Production Consultant at IITPSA and Vice Chairman (Standards & Accreditation) of International Professional Practice Partnership, IP3): “Old wine, new bottles”
  • Tichaona Zororo (Director at Enterprise Governance of IT): “The future of digital transformation governance using COBIT”
  • Graeme Huddy (Global Change Enabler at Mobius Group): “Managing risks while going digital to improve service delivery”
  • Dr Shanil Batohi (Digital Business Strategist / Business Optimisation Consultant): “Back to the future: A case study in digital transformation, merging design thinking with IT governance”
  • Gary Hardy (Managing Director at ITWinners): “Effective business engagement”

The event also featured a Digital Transformation panel discussion moderated by Winston Hayden (Executive Advisor and Management Consultant: Cybersecurity & Governance) and joined by panellists Carolynn Chalmers (Executive Director at Candor Governance and Chief Executive Officer at The Good Governance Academy), Sebenzile David Mazula (Partner/Director – Risk Assurance at PwC South Africa), Anton Bouwer (Director, Beta Software Proprietary Limited) and Professor Josef Langerman (Head: Engineering Capability and Ways of Working at Standard Bank Group).

The event was proudly sponsored by:

  • Auditor-General South Africa – Diamond Sponsor
  • Mobius Consulting – Platinum Sponsorship
  • Beta Software & Arbutus – Gold Sponsorship
  • KnowBe4 Company – Silver Sponsor
  • Symphonise Consulting – Silver Sponsor
  • PWC South Africa – Mobile App Sponso
  • Excellenta – Display Sponsor

Post-conference feedback was positive all round. Delegates expressed that the conference was well organised, interactive, and informative. MC and programme coordinator of the day, Verity Price (Speaker & Facilitator on Leading for Innovation & Sustainability) also received glowing praise from delegates and speakers.

Members were treated to a featured live cook-along demonstration of a delicious chicken curry in a sweet peanut chilli sauce with Chef Brett Nussey (Principal at Superyacht Culinary Academy) at the end of the first day. Some members were also fortunate to receive sponsored prizes during the lucky draws and spot prizes awarded over the two days.

The prizes included:

  • Beta Software & Arbutus sponsored 12 bottles of Groote Post Merlot 2018. These prizes were awarded to C Loe Shabalala and Craig Holmes.
  • KnowBe4 Company proudly sponsored a Google Home. This prize was awarded to Shanaaz Sulaiman.
  • Symphonise Consulting proudly sponsored two R2 000 training vouchers, two R1 000 training vouchers and 2 x R500 training vouchers. These prizes were awarded to:

- Lydia Moleele

- Portia Mushwana

- Ben Smit

- Yimika Oluwadare

- Marius Bothma

- Shana Zungu

  • Excellenta sponsored 2 x free Privacy Readiness Assessments and 2 x R500 Loot vouchers. These prizes were awarded to:

- Emily May Mara

- Kgaogelo Machacha

- Phindile Mabaso

- Jusin M

- Sandika Daya

The ISACA South Africa Chapter also sponsored multiple branded prizes to delegates in the following categories each day:

  • Best Tweet of the day:

- Sandika Daya (day 1 winner)

- Rirhandzu Rissenga (day 2 winner)

  • Where’s Mr Robot Social Media competition

- Kabelo Legodi

- Aashika Bava

  • Top 10 of the leader board game on the mobile app:

- Rirhandzu Rissenga

- Sandika Daya

- Abigail Morgan

- Tshegofatso Tshifhango

- Gayatri Soma

- Aashika Bava

- Reatlegile Matolong

- Yadiv Maharaj

- Onkabetse Mmolotsi

- Kabelo Legodi

  • Click game winners on the mobile app:

- Mikateko Masingo

- Llewellyn Philip

- Onkebetse Mmolotsi

  • Cook-along competition winner:

- Kgabo Ralebepa

  • Most engaged delegates on the Zoom chat:

- Henry Oliver

- Denton McGregor

A pre-conference workshop entitled: ‘Governance and Auditing of Social Media’ was presented by Tichaona Zororo, CIA, CISA, CISM, CGEIT, CRMA, CRISC, COBIT Certified Assessor on 31 July 2020; and a post-conference workshop entitled ‘COBIT 2019 Foundations Training’ was led by Zororo from 5 to 6 August 2020. Muvhango Livhusha acted as MC & Programme Coordinator for these workshops with back-office support by Eugene May. The workshops were well attended.

Kenneth Palliam (Vice-President and Programme Director) closed the conference by thanking the ISACA SA Chapter Conference Committee and everyone who made the conference a success. He attributed the success of these events to the hard work, passion and dedication of a team committed to going the extra mile; each contributing in their own way. He extended appreciation to attendees for their continued support and stated that “no conference would be complete without you”.

The ISACA SA Chapter wishes to recognise service providers and suppliers who contributed to the planning and ultimate success of this event:

  • To the T Graphic Design & Cupcakery – Taahirah Ganie (creative artwork and graphic design)
  • Geekmom – Paul Lotter and Liesl van Wyk Lotter (developer of conference Web site)
  • Studio Monochrome – Cecilia van der Merwe (virtual digital backgrounds)
  • Cube Workspace – Ayla Zegal (Cape Town studio)
  • Flexible Workspace – Sarah Dickson (Johannesburg studio)
  • JOVON Sales – Jolene Joshua (supply of branded masks)
  • Fairylight Events – Naomi de Stadler (supply of speaker appreciation gifts)
  • CrowdCompass – Tamal Banerjee (set-up of the mobile app)
From left: Digital Transformation Panel Discussion: Moderator Winston Hayden with panellists Carolynn Chalmers, Sebenzile David Mazula, Anton Bouwer, Prof Josef Langerman and MC & Programme Coordinator, Verity Price
From left: Digital Transformation Panel Discussion: Moderator Winston Hayden with panellists Carolynn Chalmers, Sebenzile David Mazula, Anton Bouwer, Prof Josef Langerman and MC & Programme Coordinator, Verity Price
From left: At the Cape Town studio: Mahomed Osman, Rowan Parkerson, Esther van der Walt, Robin Williams, Sanjay Charavanapavan, Anri Veldman, Verity Price, Eugene May, Arlene-Lynn Volmink
From left: At the Cape Town studio: Mahomed Osman, Rowan Parkerson, Esther van der Walt, Robin Williams, Sanjay Charavanapavan, Anri Veldman, Verity Price, Eugene May, Arlene-Lynn Volmink

Contact ISACA South Africa Chapter:


Web site:

Phone: (+27) 87 094 0661

Follow ISACA South Africa on Twitter:

Join ISACA South Africa on LinkedIn:

Like ISACA South Africa on Facebook:

Follow ISACA South Africa on Instagram: ISACA SA Chapter

Subscribe to the ISACA South Africa YouTube Channel:

Come visit us at our Cape Town Office: Unit 7 Roodebloem Office Park, 20 Bella Rosa Street, Rosenpark, 7535

ISACA South Africa Chapter Board of Directors:

Arlene-Lynn Volmink - President

Kenneth Palliam - Vice President & Programme Director

Carolynn Chalmers - Secretary

Francois Le Roux – Treasurer

Terence Fogarty – Digital, Security and Communications Director

Nolan Nadesan - KZN Regional Director

Robin Williams - Western Cape & Eastern Cape Regional Director

Kgabo Ralebepa - Johannesburg Regional Director

Dr. Cameron Modisane - Pretoria Regional Director

Edmore Taruvinga - Academic Relations & Education Director

Muvhango Livhusha – Certification & Training Director

Mahomed Osman - Marketing & Membership Director

Tichaona Zororo - Past President

The ISACA SA Chapter is proud to host two annual conferences in 2021.

Editorial contacts
ISACA South Africa Marketing & Membership Director Mahomed Osman
ISACA South Africa Chapter President Arlene-Lynn Volmink
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