Former CIA Officer Shares Security-Conscious Parenting Tips in her Novel License to Parent

There’s no question that parenting looks a lot different than it did in the 60s and 70s. There’s one well-known term that has surfaced — the idea of the helicopter parent. Many parents today are overworked and stressed by the concept of protecting children against the potential threats of life. From falling to talking to strangers, the list is endless.

In this episode, Fred speaks with Christina Hillsberg about her career in the CIA and how the skills she learned in the agency have equipped her to parent with more autonomy. She captures these insights in her book, License to Parent, where she shares hard lessons she learned in her early parenting years, and tactical methods to introduce security and safety to young children in an approachable way. She shares that “the unlikely can become the likely very quickly,” and fostering a culture of preparedness can keep parents one step ahead.

Christina is a former CIA intelligence analyst, writer, and mother of five. After leaving the CIA in 2015, Christina worked in Information Security at Amazon, where she stood up the company’s first Insider Threat program, created a new global framework to analyze cyber risks, and established new processes to utilize intelligence tradecraft to analyze information security threats. She then transitioned to Amazon Public Relations where she incorporated security awareness techniques into PR guidance for employees to ensure confidentiality of drones and test sites for Amazon Prime Air, the company’s drone delivery program. In 2017, she began a new chapter as a writer and Stay at Home Mom.