Marc Roger’s career spans more than 20 years, including a decade managing security for the UK operator Vodafone. He’s been a CISO in South Korea and co-founded a disruptive Bay Area startup. He’s been hacking since the ’80s and is now a white-hat hacker as well as the Head of Security for Cloudflare. In his role as technical adviser on Mr Robot, he helped create hacks for the show. And as if that’s not enough, he also organises the world’s largest hacking conference. We caught up with Marc to find out how he works.
Image via Marc Rogers
Location: San Francisco
Current gig: Head of Information Security for Cloudflare
One word that best describes how you work: Relentless
Current mobile device: iPhone 7, Samsung Galaxy 6, Blackphone
Current computer: Apple MBP (Late 2016)
First of all, tell us a little about your background and how you got to where you are today.
I have been a prominent member of the hacking scene since the ’80s and an organiser for DEF CON, the world’s largest hacking conference for 19 years. I am currently the Head of Security for DEF CON. As a result, more people know me as Cjunky or Cyberjunky than they do as “Marc”.
My first hack, somewhat predictably, was my school when I was around 15. Later, in the ’90s, I co-founded the notorious British hacker group known as “The Agents of a Hostile Power”. The AoHP were known as pioneers of Hacktivism and as the first “Ethical Blackhat Hackers”.
Among my more notable achievements are helping create and appear in the award winning BBC TV series The Real Hustle and, most recently, my work as a technical adviser on USA’s Mr Robot. Today I use hacking skills as a whitehat hacker. Some of my recent hacks include Google Glass, Apple TouchID and, perhaps most famously, the Tesla Model S sports car.
What apps, software or tools can’t you live without?
I carry network analysis tools and a kit for dismantling electronic hardware wherever I go.
What’s your workspace setup like?
Organised chaos. I have partially finished projects and half dismantled electronics everywhere. In terms of hardware, as well as my MBP, I have a pair of 27-inch Ultra HD monitors and several loaded Intel NUCs running Linux.
What’s your best time-saving shortcut or life hack?
Whenever you need a quick burst of free internet, look for a service that offers the ability to download an app or browse a site. In most cases this will give you a few minutes of free internet. This works particularly well on aeroplanes.
What’s your favourite to-do list manager?
What everyday thing are you better at than everyone else? What’s your secret?
Procrastinating. Why do today something you can put off to tomorrow?
What do you listen to while you work? Got a favourite playlist? Maybe talk radio? Or do you prefer silence?
I like silence when I am planning.
I like ’70s Punk when I am hacking.
I listen to the BBC when driving.
What are you currently reading? Or what’s something you’d recommend?
Snow Crash — probably for the 10th time.
How do you recharge? What do you do when you want to forget about work?
I hack stuff 🙂 Some of my best hacks come from relaxing at home.
What’s your sleep routine like? Are you a night owl or early riser?
I have the hacker’s curse: Insomnia. My brain never shuts down. There is always one more site to view, one more gadget to fiddle with.
Fill in the blank: I’d love to see ___ answer these same questions.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t worry too much about what people think about you; instead, learn to like the person you see in the mirror.
Is there anything else you’d like to add that might be interesting to readers?
Just remember anything man makes, man can break. Everything can be hacked in some way.
We’ve asked heroes, experts and flat-out productive people to share their shortcuts, workspaces and routines. Want to suggest someone we should feature or questions we should ask? [contact text=”Let us know.”]