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Hostile Takeover

Hands emerging from the screen creep down like spiders to crawl across a keyboard warped into the top half of a globe.

Photo of Matt Larsen
2 1

Written by

Sketch 1 (1,500 characters)

Sketch 2 (1,500 characters)

Same sketch in Adobe Illustrator. This took more than the 1-2 hours recommended but I felt was necessary to adapt to the recommended EFF style.

Tell us more about you. (1,000 characters)

I am inspired in equal measures by cartoons and the intersecting lines of architecture. By day, I work in user experience (UX) and graphic design while also maintaining skills in writing and 3D modeling.

Why are you participating in this Challenge? (750 characters)

I am interested in extending my brand as well as illustrating security and expanding on the concept of remote takeover. Inspiration in the negative--anything other than a menacing hooded figure--led to the question of what things intersect between dread, global reach and the standard tools we use for the Internet. Arachnids are sometimes poisonous and always unsettling; feeding primarily by injecting chemicals that cause the insides of their prey to turn to liquid that can then be sucked out. I was also inspired by the facehugger from the Alien series, a design that turns two hands into a clasping mobile ovipositor. The spatial mapping of keyboard to a globe turns a this tool from outreach to a focus for intrusion, weakness as strength.

Website(s) on Instagram

What is your experience with the field of cybersecurity?

  • I have minimal experience and/or knowledge in the cybersecurity field.

What best describes you?

  • I’m a professional visual creator affiliated with an organization.

How did you hear about this OpenIDEO Challenge?

  • Someone in my network (word of mouth)

Location: City


Location: State / District


Location: Country

  • United States of America

Attachments (1)

Hostile Takeover RGB.jpg

There are a lot of inspirations for invasion. Famously, the poster for John Carpenter's the Thing, in which the face of the Thing is obscured by a bright light. Also, in the same vein of horror science fiction, the facehugger from the Alien series united a pair of hands to clasp on the face of an unwitting victim. Here, the unnatural green hands emerge from the screen, referencing movies three and four: Videodrome and Frankenstein, creeping like spiders over the surface of the keyboard.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Dima Boulad

Hello Matt Larsen  Happy to see your contribution to the Cybersecurity challenge. How would you consider pushing this idea further? We've had a large number of very interesting creations, have you had a chance to browse other submissions? There's a very interesting conversation around cybersecurity going on!

Photo of Matt Larsen

Thank you so much for your comment, Dima Boulad! I have looked at some of the other contributions and must say that I am very impressed with the thought that went into their design, many of them accomplishing what I wanted much more efficiently. I know it sometimes takes tremendous effort to appear as though you have hardly moved at all. In further iterations, I would explore recoloring the vector image as well as exploring the same in 3D and/or animated. In the storyboard, I can imagine the keyboard coming into view, keys like skyscrapers, while lines of text scroll down the screen, when the hands crawl out from it like creeping spiders. THE QUESTION IS... does this present too pessimistic a view of cybersecurity? Is there a solution to the creep factor that we all feel in coming to our keyboards? Are there further conversations we can have about presenting both the dangers and the solutions inherent in cybersecurity? (For instance, if you were to expand the above graphic, showing a fly swatter just above the keyboard, ready to strike and force the creeping fingers away.) Thanks again and looking forward to any further feedback.