This is a service announcement for product/service vendors.

As an information security executive, I appreciate all the work you do. The products and services that you develop are feature-rich and help me secure my environment, and I appreciate partnering with you to make that happen.

However, there are some rules that you need to follow:

1. Do not cold-call me and within 30 seconds ask me what my budget is. I'm not going to tell you what I am willing to pay if I don't have a previous working relationship with you and have sufficient confidence in your ability to provide me with a reasonable value proposition. I appreciate the fact that you want to make money, and it is in my best interest that you do. I realize that you will not be around the next time I need you if I do not let you make a profit. I do not mind paying for a product or service that is provided well.

2. Without having any knowledge of my environment, do not tell me that what I have been doing is ineffective and too expensive. It is an insult to my abilities to deliver value to my organization.

3. Do not claim that commercial products are always better and cheaper than open source alternatives. I realize that open source products also need to be maintained and that I need product-specific skills in order to operate them. If what you offer can be operated by somebody who's skill set is limited to operating a toaster, I probably do not want to do business with you.

4. Sometimes your call is not convenient. If I let you go to voice mail, do not call back three times in the following five minutes.

5. Don't schedule a follow-up phone call with a sales engineer if I do not explicitly agree to that.

Thank you for your attention.