Man and Machine, People and Purpose

F-Secure Life

To commemorate F-Secure’s 30th year of innovation, we’re profiling 30 of our fellows from our more than 25 offices around the globe.

Keith Martin thinks the future technology will erode intercultural differences. Difference is also key when it comes to working at F-Secure.

“I think we’ll be seeing advancements in medicine by 2048 where we have completely customized medicine designed for not only your body type, but your genetic make-up. I think language barriers between people will be completely gone, as we will speak whatever language we want. Our embedded translator will instantaneously change it into the language of the person we are talking to,” says F-Secure’s Regional Manager for the Asia-Pacific region (APAC).

Self-driving cars will be the norm too. Collisions will be so rare that they will make the headlines, according to him.

“And AI will play a huge part in cyber security, with AI vs AI in many cases. Passwords won’t be authentication tools anymore, replaced completely by biometrics utilizing something we haven’t even thought of yet,” he predicts.

Keith has spent more than half his life in Japan, having first travelled to the country for a year-long study abroad program back in 1990.

He returned to Japan after graduating two years later, and has been living there ever since. His career in IT began with a job in sales for EDS (now owned by HP), and has covered a wide range of sales, operations, and management positions in the IT sector over the subsequent years.

Working in Tokyo has benefits.

“There are huge opportunities for business, which makes it exciting to go to work every day. I sometimes get treated a bit differently as a foreigner, which can actually be a good thing in many of cases. I can often maneuver my way through customer and partner organizations with less of the cultural restrictions than are inflicted upon the Japanese.”

But things in Japan can often take a long time to move forward.

“They have an idiom in Japanese that translates to, ‘sit three years on a rock’, with the implication that it takes that long for the rock to warm. This teaches the importance of perseverance and patience, two traits that are critical in building business relationships with our partners. It can take time, but the results can be amazing in the long term if you are willing to put in the time and effort,” he explains.

The best cyber security professionals have a wide range of experiences with technology, and a hunger to learn more. Keith has some advice for people looking to get involved with cybersecurity specifically in the Asia-Pacific region.

“I’m generally not that concerned with finding talent from my competitors, as many are product experts rather than true experts in cyber security. Frankly, I prefer those who come from a systems integration background and know networks, operating systems, programming languages and hardware. They have a great base upon which they can build the cyber security expertise. And in the Asia-Pacific region, it never hurts to speak a couple of languages either!”

He particularly likes two parts of his job. One is F-Secure’s mission to make the world safer from cyber criminals, which he is passionate about sharing with others.

“Then there is the people side. We have some really great people on the team, and I love working with them to make our future business even better,” Keith says. “I also love hearing stories of our red teaming consulting engagements, as they remind me of Mission Impossible style capers. I get inspired by our amazing people who find new ways to stop the bad guys,” Keith concludes.

And check out our open positions if you want to join Keith and the hundreds of other great fellows fighting to keep internet users safe from online threats.

 

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