5 Ways to Avoid Cliches While Depicting Cybersecurity In Your Images by@katerinamalyavkina

5 Ways to Avoid Cliches While Depicting Cybersecurity In Your Images

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Katerina Malyavkina HackerNoon profile picture

Katerina Malyavkina

Content Marketing Specialist at Everypixel.com

Image source — Unsplash

As of March 2021, around 65.6 percent of the world's population are active Internet users, which is more than two times higher than in 2011. Of this total, 92.6 percent use mobile devices to access the Internet. On average, every second person uses a device connected to the network, and his personal life and comfort depend, among other things, on the speed of the Internet connection.

Along with the increase in active Internet users, the number of cybercrimes is also increasing, hacking and leakage of personal data in large companies, for example, Facebook or Uber, regularly occur. Such reports in the press need to be illustrated. And we see images of castles, guys in hoodies with hoods, numbers like in "The Matrix", and so on. However, in the real world, hackers have different complexions, nationalities and do not always wear a hood.

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Image source — Pexels 

In this article, Denis Sorokin, creative director of Everypixel, will talk about how to portray the topic of cybersecurity in a way that resonates with people.

The basic idea of cybersecurity

First, you need to figure out the ideas and terms of cybersecurity. This will help you understand how to illustrate this topic better. 

The basic idea of cybersecurity is reliability. People need to be sure that they can rely on their devices, not change their behavior online, and that their data will be safe. In addition, people want to know how companies use the data they collect about them. It is essential to understand that this is a human problem, not a technical one.

Emotions instead of locks 

Images of locks and hackers do not help to reflect the various ways of protecting information. And importantly, they do not have an emotional component, which is important for the final audience.

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Image source — Pexels

Model the situation to illustrate the topic better. Try to understand how you would feel if you were in a person's place. For example, imagine that hackers encrypted all your photos from a honeymoon trip, a trip to Burning Man or from your child's birthday and demanded a ransom. Or, one by one, messages about purchases from your card started coming to your phone. Imagine what emotions it will be! Try to illustrate situations by conveying them.

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Image source — Pexels

Transferring actions to the real world

Try to imagine what the hackers' actions would look like in the real world. For example, you are lying on the couch at home, and suddenly a hacker comes in and starts rummaging through your computer.  It seems funny, but that's how it happens, only virtually. Or a fake bank has opened near your bank. It is almost identical in name and design, and they are easily confused. And people transferred their money there because they ignored inconsistencies.

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Image source — Unsplash

The aesthetics of cyberpunk

To illustrate cybersecurity, you can use the aesthetics of cyberpunk, which has steady popularity. Neon lighting, holograms, futuristic clothes and hairstyles, glowing glasses - this is how you can portray typical characters of the network. This cultural code will be read unambiguously.

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Image source — Unsplash

Metaphors

We share a lot of information on social networks and leave our digital footprint on all websites and messengers. So those who have access to Big Data know a lot about us. They are almost like psychics - they can tell where we were yesterday, who we met, what we bought, where we ate and what. So perhaps a psychic is an excellent metaphor to explain to a housewife what Big Data is.

Think about what other metaphors you can use to explain something complicated about online security.

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To avoid using cliches in the visual representation of cybersecurity, you need to figure out what cybersecurity is for a particular person or group of people: what they lose in case of hacking, how it will affect them and what they should do to avoid getting hurt.


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