Wanted: Cybersecurity Imagery
Eli Sugarman of the Hewlettt Foundation laments about the sorry state of cybersecurity imagery:
The state of cybersecurity imagery is, in a word, abysmal. A simple Google Image search for the term proves the point: It’s all white men in hoodies hovering menacingly over keyboards, green “Matrix”-style 1s and 0s, glowing locks and server racks, or some random combination of those elements—sometimes the hoodie-clad men even wear burglar masks. Each of these images fails to convey anything about either the importance or the complexity of the topic—or the huge stakes for governments, industry and ordinary people alike inherent in topics like encryption, surveillance and cyber conflict.
I agree that this is a problem. It’s not something I noticed until recently. I work in words. I think in words. I don’t use PowerPoint (or anything similar) when I give presentations. I don’t need visuals.
But recently, I started teaching at the Harvard Kennedy School, and I constantly use visuals in my class. I made those same image searches, and I came up with similarly unacceptable results.