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ConnecTED Speaking Series: What you need to know about stalkerware

Beverley Glick

In our new ConnecTED Speaking Series, TED-style speaking specialist Beverley Glick looks at examples of TED talks to see what we can learn from this powerful short-talk format.  

Talk title: What you need to know about stalkerware

Speaker: Eva Galperin 

Venue and date: TEDWomen, December 2019

Synopsis: “Full access to a person’s phone is the next best thing to full access to a person’s mind,” says cybersecurity expert Eva Galperin. In an urgent talk, she describes the emerging danger of stalkerware (software designed to spy on someone by gaining access to their devices without their knowledge) and calls on antivirus companies to recognise these programmes as malicious in order to discourage abusers and protect victims.

What we love about this talk: 

  • She’s not afraid to show us her emotions (addressing one of the TED commandments) – her anger, her fear, but also her humour.
  • The use of a simple yet powerful simile: “Data leaks – it’s like water. It gets into places you don’t want it.”
  • All of her examples are relatable and often shocking, and she gives practical advice about how to protect yourself from online stalkers.
  • She makes the complex plain – referencing a couple of essential acronyms, but explaining them fully (e.g., RAT – remote access tool). 
  • She’s not afraid to be hard-hitting and shocking to get her points across – especially when talking about the features of spyware. 

Idea worth spreading: I’ve helped to launch a Coalition Against Stalkerware, and my hope is that next year I can tell you that the problem has been solved, and that any antivirus programme you download will be able to detect stalkerware.

What we would do to improve this talk: Get her to use gestures with both hands, even though she’s holding a clicker. While she does have gravitas, her voice often goes up at the end of sentences. She would have more impact if her voice went down at the end so that she’s making a clear statement rather than sounding as if she’s asking a question. We’d also encourage her to take a few dramatic pauses in order to cut down the “ums” and “ahs”.

Top marks for: Bravery, passion, telling tough truths, showing us her emotions, delivering one of the most popular TED talks of 2019.

Ginger’s TED-style speaking programmes transform the impact of presentations, pitches and other business communications scenarios. Find out more about how we can help your team here

Beverley Glick

An award-winning public speaker and storytelling expert, Beverley is an experienced lead trainer who specialises in TED-style speaker coaching and training.

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