OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign Up / Login or Learn more

The Fine Print

We are living in a hyperconnected time where digital access to all our personal data is literally at our fingertips.

Photo of Katie Zwick
1 1

Written by

Sketch 1 (1,500 characters)

These sketches are the product of a collaborative process at an OpenIDEO NYC Chapter event. The team started thinking about trust, and imagining what makes us unique - our DNA - as a double helix made out of steel chain links: secure, yet still vulnerable. When we started considering how we access our data and how something as unique as a fingerprint (or even a DNA testing kit) is so widely shared now, often without a second thought to data privacy because we trust that it’s being kept safe, we drew a fingerprint in one of the links. This represents the core safety and security of the individual, but it is still only a small component.

Sketch 2 (1,500 characters)

To simplify the DNA concept while retaining its deeply personal nature, we decided to focus on the fingerprint and look at it in an abstract way. Yes, the fingerprint is intrinsically linked to the individual, but what more is there in the patterns and lines that make up the fingerprint? When stamped or brushed, a fingerprint has topographic qualities like those of a map. What if you could use this iconic imprint to protect or hide your personal information? We discussed that the fingerprint could be seen from above like a maze or labyrinth with personal effects and artifacts strewn along the course - money, keys, photos, etc. Even though the fingerprint maze is difficult to solve, it is not completely impenetrable. The border around the fingerprint - the “outer wall” - represents the importance of reinforcing and further protecting your personal information, even when it feels like it is safe within the maze. We should be mindful about what data we share, and where and how we share it.

What have you learned through this sketching process? (1,000 characters)

Through the sketching process, we learned how crucial it is to sketch quickly and with abandon, iterate often, and seek feedback from those around us. A concept that makes sense to one person might not make sense to others, but something we think will be unclear is actually a very common and uniting idea.

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

Our team is made up of: - A marketing project manager making the slow transition into user experience design. I have a BFA in illustration and a few years of freelance graphic design experience under my belt. I am inspired by things that I see everyday including desire paths in public parks, lichen and moss, construction sites, spreadsheets, and houseplants. - A strategic marketing and BD professional in the professional services world who is nurturing her creative side in pursuits like this, and has a strong interest in design thinking, tech, diversity and inclusion, and storytelling. All of these things plus playing and engaging with music inspire me endlessly. - A creative writer and editor whose professional career spans two continents and the fields of technology, entertainment, international education, and project management.

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

We’re participating in this Challenge to get more familiar with collaborative design exercises, receiving and incorporating feedback from others, reimagining traditional imagery and its connotations, and finding universally relatable solutions that are adapted to the changing digital landscape that we find ourselves in now. Team members also have a personal interest in security and privacy, especially making these concepts accessible to everyone and humanizing the “hacker” visual, and also in terms of how we can stay digitally connected and become increasingly connected in this IoT age while also remaining aware of the numerous data privacy issues and how to protect ourselves.


Katie Zwick: Aliza Lalani: Jakob Guanzon:

What is your experience with the field of cybersecurity?

  • I have never worked in cybersecurity before but am excited to learn more and get involved.

What best describes you?

  • Other

How did you hear about this OpenIDEO Challenge?

  • Through an OpenIDEO chapter

Location: City

New York City

Location: State / District

New York

Location: Country

  • United States of America

Attachments (1)

1 comment

Join the conversation:

Photo of Dima Boulad

Hello Katie Zwick ! 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!