Hey Jamie! Thanks for chatting with us. Firstly, do you believe that certain areas of the dark web grew during the height of Covid-19 lockdowns?
Not necessarily growth per se, because I think total dark net market sales were broadly similar compared to a year ago (something like $2bn). But certainly there has been a very predictable increase in specific services offered. Ransomware has increased and so has various Covid-related scams (including vaccines).
Do you believe that by being transparent and socially engaged brands can create stronger trust with consumers?
I think there are different types of transparency, and it’s not quite the same as honesty. It depends. I’d prefer a company that was honest about its mistakes rather than one which published all its meeting minutes for example. And while it’s not my area of expertise, I think consumers can see through companies that are using social issues for branding or marketing wins. Improved trust should be a by-product, not the purpose.
What is the biggest lesson you have learned throughout this last year?
Online scammers are even more inventive than legitimate businesses when it comes to taking advantage of new opportunities.
If you could give one piece of advice to your teenage self, regarding you career, what would it be?
It takes far longer than you think to work out what you want to do in life, so don’t worry so much about it in your early 20s; most people are also bluffing it to some extent; make yourself indispensable by accepting responsibility for tasks that are technically above your grade. Delegating responsibility is what every senior person secretly wants & needs.
Who or what is your biggest daily inspiration?
The never ending desire to make technology understandable and less frightening for people. That may come from seeing members of my family struggle! I worry a lot about people getting left behind as we rush confidently forward.
Join Jamie at Digital Day Next on April 22 where he'll be speaking about the digital underworld, trust, privacy and what they mean for brands.