Innovate, Follow or Get Out of Rey’s Way

Posted on by RSAC Editorial Team

*Warning this post or embedded links may contain spoilers*

Note: This is part four of a five-part monthly series to kick off 2018 in which we take a look at characters from the Star Wars saga and how technology, topics, and trends from the cybersecurity world compare to characters and themes from the blockbuster films.

We hope you enjoy our blog series in which the Resistance, filled with hope and determination, much like that of a Security Operations Center, scrambles to stay one step ahead of the evil First Order. Like cyber attackers, the First Order threatens to destroy a way of life that the Resistance desperately fights to cherish and uphold.

April’s Spotlight Character: Rey
April’s Spotlight Theme:
April’s Vertical Focus: Finance/Banking

 Credit: Forbes(Image credit: Forbes)

What can be said about Rey, the rising star of the Star Wars universe? She is a Jakku scavenger, a survivor hardened by having to live by her wits and ingenuity on a harsh desert planet - basically “nowhere” (as lost Jedi Master Luke Skywalker calls it). When the fugitive droid BB-8 appeals to her for help, Rey quickly finds herself drawn from her own scrappy existence into a galaxy-spanning conflict.

Despite dismissing herself as “no one,” she bursts on to the scene as an especially strong and self-assured character, buoyed by a strong moral compass.

The first order, including Kylo Ren, do not recognize this of course, but make the critical mistake of underestimating her. In her previous life she has had to directly apply her creativity - a definition of innovation – for her basic survival. These hard-won skills, together with her heart, determination and natural leadership abilities inspire those around her, making her fellow fighters stronger. Their engagements with the First Order have the potential for success not just because of her involvement, but because of her impact on the group that makes it greater than the sum of its parts. 

Does she have it all figured out? No. She must work within the dynamic world she lives in. In Star Wars, an all-powerful force influences events and empowers individuals, and when it comes to innovation the creative spark can operate in the same way. 

It often involves close observation of your present reality, interpretation of data and consideration of varied and diverse perspectives and experiences. This can lead to thinking in new and different ways others can’t imagine or choose not to all while keeping a specific goal in mind. 

Cybersecurity is similar to the sci-fi world of Star Wars in that it is constantly changing, the stakes are high and it takes top-level, innovative thinking to survive let alone thrive in the future. Whether it’s the newest consumer IoT devices or the finer points of machine learning, cybersecurity innovation plays a critical role in our world. Now, more than ever, it is a business requirement. From devising a winning strategy to modernization, innovation also goes hand in hand with successful leadership. That holds true whether you’re seasoned CEO or a former scavenger ready to lead the galaxy’s ultimate rebellion.

As the main protagonist in the latest Star Wars trilogy, it will be fascinating to see how Rey leads a now decimated band of rebels in the fight to fend off the First Order. Although she seeks out Skywalker, hoping that he will aid the Resistance and help her learn to control her newfound powers, he will not be able to help her. At the end of Episode VIII, she finds he has faded into the depths of Jedi greats. But she has also already proven to herself and those around her that this “no one” is someone who is more about providing help than looking for it herself. In a short time, she has come far from being a scavenger on a dead-end planet to being the best hope for the Resistance. 

We look forward to the innovative approaches she and her team take while trying to save the galaxy in Episode IX in 2019.

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Part One (January): What Do Star Wars’ Kylo Ren and Data Privacy Have in Common?

Part Two (February): SecDevOps: The Space Cowboys of the Future

Part Three (March): The Lovable Defector and the Double-Edged Sword of Technology

RSAC Editorial Team

Editorial, RSA Conference

Business Perspectives

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