A Conversation with Rita Gurevich, founder of SPHERE Technology Solutions

Advice for Young Entrepreneurs: “Now is the time!”

Rita Gurevich started SPHERE, a cybersecurity company, when she was twenty-five, an age not that far away from most of the participants in this year’s International Conference. When I asked what she wished she would have known when she was just starting out, her answer surprised me with its simplicity and subtlety. She stated, “Be confident but not cocky. Surround yourself with people who actually know a thing or two.” She confessed that she had tried to do it all herself in those early years, and wishes that she sought out the experience of others who were experts in fields she wasn’t an expert in. She urged young people to take risks while unburdened with responsibilities, while they were ambitious and full of energy.

The Future of Cybersecurity:

According to Rita Gurevich, the future of cybersecurity looks grave. Unfortunately, the annoyance you feel every time you have to go through dual authentication and security updates upon security updates will never vanish. In a world where a simple hacked email can compromise your identification, we have no choice than to be more alert. Gurevich referenced the recent Equifax breach, which compromised numerous Social Security numbers, as evidence for how dangerous hackers are becoming. She also discussed biometrics, like fingerprints and eye scans, as forms of authentication, along with various other forms of multifactor authentication, comparing their pros and cons. The scariest part of these hacks is how “personal” they are. Gurevich described a chilling situation in which hospital networks are breached. Gurevich concluded by stating that “hackers are affecting your health not just Walmart’s wallet,” stressing how close hackers can get to your life in a such a frightening way. However, Gurevich ended on a positive note, saying that technology has evolved and will keep evolving to handle the threats posed by hackers. It paves the way for innovation and creative problem solving. It allows us to evolve along with these solutions, creating a world of opportunity.

Ingredients for a Better Company:

Gurevich stressed the practicality of running a business. She emphasized two main points to keep in mind while starting a company. The first is to choose something that people will buy. The second is to make sure that people actually buy it. Although it sounds simple and intuitive, these two tips can make a world of difference between a successful and sustainable company and an unsuccessful one. Gurevich also placed a lot of importance on what she called “soft skills,” skills in speaking and marketing yourself and your product effectively. The importance of these skills to Gurevich is unparalleled in the business world.