May 9, 2013

What Scandal gladiators have taught me about IT

Ansley Kilgore

Scandal gladiatorsIf your office is like any other these days, then Scandal mania has taken over conversations around the proverbial water cooler. Shonda Rhimes’ latest hit drama is all the rage, and it can best be described as Washington intrigue meets spy thriller meets epic romance with tragedy written all over it. I, too, am engrossed by the intricately-woven storyline, and above all, by the deeply flawed characters that Shonda creates for us to love and hate all at the same time. I’ll be honest, Scandal had me hooked at the first episode with the line, “I want to be a gladiator in a suit!”

I like to believe that the story is not outlandish at all – that it could in fact happen and probably has happened. Maybe not during one administration as depicted in the show, but sprinkled across a wide variety of presidencies notorious in their own right. Some of the hints are too obvious to ignore!

But as someone who works in the Information Technology industry – I also at times can’t help be a bit circumspect about the way IT is depicted on the show. Penetrating firewalls to obtain bank records, Pentagon secrets or health information? No problem. Finding unlisted cell phone numbers and personal call history? Easy. Cracking encrypted online codes? Done.

So the question becomes, are these things really possible? Is our data truly this easy to steal and analyze? Will the entire story of our lives eventually be told in digital code? Or is this simply good story telling? Well, if I believe the premise of the overall story line, then I have to believe that these IT tricks and hijinks are possible. And if not today, surely a group of tricky hackers – er, gladiators – will figure it out in the near future.

At Internap, I think we have some pretty talented IT gladiators on our own payroll. So Shonda – if you ever need any consulting for an episode – we’ve got you covered. Until then, we will anticipate each episode with much intensity and then recap, analyze and revel around the water cooler the next day.

Internap – IT Gladiators for Hire.

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Ansley Kilgore

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