Naked Security's Graham Cluley and Carole Theriault say goodbye

Filed Under: Featured

The end of an era has come. After a combined service of - gulp - 29 years, we are saying au revoir...

Graham Cluley writes:

Faithful reader,

It's time for me to clear my desk, shake the crumbs out of my keyboard, pack up my remote control Dalek, and go home.

My desk. Circa 2008

I've been working at Sophos since 1999, and writing articles for Naked Security since.. well, since before it was called "Naked Security".

(Little known fact: for a while we considered calling the site "Security Hound", with a subhead of "P*ssing on the lamp post of security".. probably a good thing we didn't run with that in the end)

But, in the words of George Harrison, all things must pass.

After writing over 2500 articles for Naked Security, I fancy doing something different - and hope to fill my time writing on (yes, that's a vanity domain name) about the latest security threats, public speaking and generally enjoying being my own boss.

You'll still be able to find me on Twitter, on Facebook (which I still loathe by the way), on Google Plus and - of course - on email.

I'm happy to leave Naked Security in the hands of a fine team of writers and experts, and am sure that Duck, Lisa, Anna, Chet, John and others will continue to keep you informed and entertained.

One person I won't be saying goodbye to is Carole, who founded the site (and besides managing me in recent years, was also the best man at my wedding :) ). She's also leaving Sophos, and will be running her own social media blog and agency.

Thanks for reading, and see you online.

Carole Theriault writes:

How do you sum up 15 years of Sophos?

When you work somewhere for sssoooooooooooo long, the lines between personal and business not only blur, they utterly disappear. Gizmos like Blackberries and RSA tags helped me bring work home, and being surrounded by lots of lovely brainy sorts made the office feel homey.

I even met my hunksband John Hawes here.

I started as a technical author back in '98 when most company webpages were still designed like posters. I leave now with the lah-di-dah title of global comms director.

Sophos has afforded me the chance to be involved in so many projects. Here are a few of the greats:

Sophos Anti-Virus for Klingon:

We wanted a guerrilla campaign, and we came up with a doozy - to deliberately leak out a Klingon translation of Sophos Anti-Virus. First, a Klingon translator was needed: enter naHQun. We then pulled together a beta webpage, littered with ‘Lorem Ipsum’ text and <!--comments--> to make it look like it had accidentally launched early. The result: a ton of press coverage, gluts of love from the sci-fi community, and a few lovely product reviews, which led to 100,000 downloads in three months. We celebrated with this video:

Sophos Anti-Virus for Mac Home Edition:

Launching Sophos’s first, free, fully functional home user product was not easy. At the time, Apple said its OS was virus free, but we knew malware targeting Macs was just around the corner. It was a bit of a slog, but we got it out the door. We so hoped to reach 100,000 users...but Sophos's free home edition for Mac boasts 2.4 million downloads.

Protection Through Distraction:

This was one of our April's Fools. we came up with the idea of distracting hackers from stealing information by titillating with erotic romance. Just watch the video. It's a little long by today's standards, but it is quite funny.

Naked Security:

My favourite project of all. Once we got the go-ahead (thanks Rainer), we came up with an untested approach to corporate comms. We sorted the logistics, content and design and then agonised about names. The eureka moment came to Graham while we were both getting body scanned at Boston Logan Airport. Today, we publish more than 100 articles every month, and 800,000 of you readers give us 1.4M page views. So proud.

I blow kisses to all of you that downloaded the aforementioned software, watched the videos or read our blogs over the years. And there will be much more to come - I am handing the Naked Security reins to the sassy Anna Brading.

With a heart as heavy as a lead piano and memories as vivid as a 1970s disco outfit, I am dipping my toe into new waters, like, a new communications blog I am playing around with. Of course I am on the usual channels: Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook, Google+ and email.

Zillions of 'Sophites' deserve a high five. My VIPs get a special mention: Grambo, AndriVanja, Anna 'Buddeeeee' Brading, Kimbot, Mr Ted Rogers, Yogi, Marloo Stockley, Duck, Wizniofski, Jilleriffic, Rainman, Petrol, Dan Ring, Sarahgirl, Whallers, Pacey, JT, TT, Pob, Fraser, Mark Harris, JDB, RJ, Matty, Phil Wood, Big Rich, Rambo, Rosie, Lisa Vaas, Peter Norman, Jan Jivmark, Pauline, Rob, Mr Holohan and Mr Harvey...If I forgot you, prod me angrily on our next meeting.

I'd never done any of this without Sophos’s two founders, Dr Jan Hruska and Dr Peter Lammer, who welcomed me into the fold after a series of seriously grueling interviews. They deserve the most thanks of all.

And finally to the leading man, CEO Kris Hagerman, who knows what a diamond of a company Sophos is, do your thing and make it sparkle.

Over and - sniff - out.

Graham Cluley and Carole Theriault

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53 Responses to Naked Security's Graham Cluley and Carole Theriault say goodbye

  1. Simon W · 806 days ago

    Best of luck for the future, I've enjoyed reading your articles very much.

  2. markstockley · 806 days ago

    Ah Klingon Anti-Virus... I don't know what was more fun; reading the Slashdot discussions where some people found the comments we planted in the code and fell hook-line-and-sinker for the 'leaked out early' bit of the story or the fact that somebody at Sophos *also* fell for it and turfed the on-call web guy out of bed to fix it.


  3. Matt · 806 days ago

    Based on the first pic of the desktop, I'd quit too

    • That pic was taken in 2008. It has since moved a little closer to the window and the lifts, but remained about as untidy until yesterday.... when it finally got cleared. :)

  4. Gavin · 806 days ago

    Best of luck to you both. Naked Security has been my #1 morning news spot for years, both because of its relevancy and the good humour with which it is presented.

    Congratulations of achieving such success with Sophos, and may that fortune follow both of you to your next adventures.

    -- Gavin

  5. Paolo Gerolimi · 806 days ago

    you might perhaps recall when the Pentagon was not there yet, and you guys were testing an Italian-language translator based in Dusseldorf...
    I'm still involved in Sophos sales, and will continue to do so and enjoy the results of your work and Graham's.
    Looking forward to see your next moves.

  6. Dave · 806 days ago

    Wow, my workweek mornings will never be the same. You get my workday off to a great start! Good luck into the future...

    • Aww Dave, you'll be fine.

      Duck, Chet, Lisa and the rest of the gang will still be writing on Naked Security - and maybe they'll get some more fellows contributing too.

      And if you still want to see my wibbling, I'll be hanging out on my own site.

  7. Jerome · 806 days ago

    Wishing you both to enjoy your new life !
    Take care

  8. Deborah Carlier · 806 days ago

    I never thought I'd see the day! Congrats to you both for finally taking the plunge out on your own - you'll both be fab. Good luck being your own bosses.....although we all know Carole will always be your boss Graham ;)

  9. Lisa Vaas · 806 days ago

    DubelmoHchugh ghewmey ghoS

    jI'IQ chonayta'

    translation: extreme boo hoo, very verklempt, hope there is a parallel universe in which minor discrepancies have popped up because your future selves dropped in to talk to your present selves in this time line.

    Best of luck, my revered, honorable, very funny, very smart, very wonderful to work with Graham and Carole. Thank you so much for having me along for what's been an extremely fun ride thanks to your leadership. I'll look forward to the journey continuing with the fearless Anna and Kim. Carole, I'll see you in Canada. Graham, I'll see you near the fortress in July. As Anonymous would say, Expect me.

  10. Roger · 806 days ago

    Sorry to see you two guys leaving us. Always been greatful for your warnings, investigations and suggestions keeping us all safe on-line. We are going to miss you buddies. Have a good trip home and we wish you well. Thanks for sharing part of your lives with us.

    Roger and the RAF Hospital Ely Association group.

  11. Ellie Hurst · 806 days ago

    Very best of luck both. Only been reading for last 18 months but its a firm favourite. I do hope the style doesnt change too much.

  12. Nigel · 806 days ago

    "reins":"I am handing the Naked Security reigns ... "

    • Paul Ducklin · 806 days ago

      As constitutional monarchy was explained to me at school, "Her Majesty reigns, she does not rule."

    • the JoshMeister · 805 days ago

      Sorry, Nigel. Carole got it right.

      Quoted from Oxford American Dictionaries:

      noun (usu. reins)
      a long, narrow strap attached at one end to a horse's bit, typically used in pairs to guide or check a horse while riding or driving.
      • figurative - the power to direct and control : management is criticized for its unwillingness to let go of the reins of an organization and delegate routine tasks.

      Either way, it's kind of inappropriate to try to correct someone's grammar when they're writing an emotional good-bye post like this, don't you think?

      • Paul Ducklin · 805 days ago

        Ah...we edited "reigns" (as in H.M. QE II) to say "reins" (as in directing a horse), but didn't annotate the fix.

        So it used to say "reigns". I'd have left it like that, for the reasons alluded to above :-)

  13. Kimberly Truong · 806 days ago

    Will miss you sooooo much!!

  14. Maxim Weinstein · 806 days ago

    I have enjoyed Naked Security and the incredible work you've both done with it over the years, first as a fan, and more recently as a Sophos colleague. Best of luck to both of you in your new adventures!

    • Thanks Maxim. Sorry we didn't get a proper chance to work together at Sophos, but I'm sure our paths will cross.

  15. Thank you Graham and Carole (love the 'hunksband'!), welcome Anna

  16. Jessica L-P · 806 days ago

    First of all - I was pleased to see a Beatles reference in this post.

    Good luck to both of you, Sophos is going to miss you dearly.

    • Paul Ducklin · 805 days ago

      We shall try to continue the Beatles allusions. (We've already had "The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill Gates" on Naked Security, as well as an analogy between CERN and Sgt. Pepper.)

      And our comments are always open for Graham to add his own Beatles references at any time...when he gets back from Miami Beach.

  17. Micky · 806 days ago

    There can only be one Cyber Queen Carole wear the tiara with pride !

  18. It was a pleasure working with you both at Sophos back when - I am cheering you on and wishing you much success in your new endeavors! It was amazing to watch you grow Naked Security into the powerhouse it is today. All the best!

  19. Graham, good luck. be sure to register your new blog in the SBN!

  20. Wish you the best of your future. I enjoyed reading your articles.

  21. Tracy · 806 days ago

    Well, the end of a spectacular era. You will be sorely missed by the community. Best of luck with you new ventures!

  22. Stringer bean · 806 days ago

    OMG! I'm almost as shocked about this as Alex Ferguson leaving United!

    You are both absolute stars and to be honest its about time you broke free of the Sophos comfort zone and went up (down?) your own free trader paths. Anyway I'm sure the big SO would take either of you back in a heart beat if it all goes tits up.

    It does beg the question though.... how did you get away with it for so long?????

  23. richpasco · 805 days ago

    I've appreciated reading all your articles. With Graham gone, now we'll be clueless.

  24. Lyman · 805 days ago

    Best of Luck to you both !!

    Will be trying to keep up with your future work.


  25. NeilW · 805 days ago

    Best of luck both of you for your futures.

    Shame we didn't get onto Uni Challenge, Graham!

  26. the JoshMeister · 805 days ago

    Graham, Carole, and Anna have been a great team!

    Best wishes to Graham and Carole in their new ventures. I know Anna will do a great job running Naked Security.

    Since we're getting all kinds of emotional stuff out there, just to let people know how amazing these three people are, let me briefly tell you a very personal story. Early last year when my then 3-year-old son was out of state preparing for a bone marrow transplant (not something you ever want a loved one to have to go through), Carole, Anna, and Graham gathered a bunch of fun things (books, toys, candy, and even a cool shark costume) and sent a care package to my son. At the time I was pretty new as a Sophos guest blogger, and the love and concern they showed for my family was truly heart-warming. I'll always remember their kindness.

    • That's really kind of you to say Josh. I can't take credit for finding that amazing shark costume - that was Anna and Carole's doing I'm sure!

      Best wishes to you and your family.

  27. alexeck · 805 days ago

    Going to seriously miss the work you guys did on Naked Security. Graham, you wrote one of the security blogs out there; Carole, you are a serious PR and marketing uber-guru.

    Kind of feels like the end of an era...

    • Thanks for the kind words Alex.

      Of course, you led the way with your security blog - that was a fine example of someone doing a really good job in the blogosphere, and one we could only hope to emulate.

      No doubt our paths will cross soon, even if it isn't on a domain name. :)

  28. Shane Coursen · 805 days ago

    For real? Best to your future, Graham and Carole. BTW Graham you look 10 years younger in the picture above than when we were at Solly's! -Shane Coursen

    • You have always been a charmer Shane. That, or needing glasses...

      I still recall that night you, me and David Emm (who is now at Kaspersky) saw some god-awful Keanu Reeves movie.

      That probably aged me about 7 years just watching that...

  29. Good luck to both of you! You'll be greatly missed. I've been a reader now for 3 years, and I've always looked forward to seeing what was written each morning in my email.

    • Thanks Scott.

      Of course, Naked Security will be continuing - so you should still get your morning fix.

      It's just that Carole and I will be doing our thing elsewhere on the web. :)

  30. asteris222 · 805 days ago

    good luck

  31. Aryeh Goretsky · 805 days ago

    Best of luck in your future endeavors!

  32. DON M. · 804 days ago

    YOU HAVE BEEN a Godsend,thanks for all you've given

  33. It's really sad to see you go. I can't imagine ever leaving a company like Sophos. One of the best times I've had still remains attending a Sophos partner conference in the UK.

    I'm not sure if carrying James Lyne around on my back while he had his arms in the air, and was yelling: "I'm the King of the world!!!" was just a result of too much Guinness or if it actually happened...
    But that's just the crux of it. Sophos is a very unique company, with very unique and talented people. And you two are certainly not an exception to the rule.
    I wish you all the best in your future endeavours, thank you for the years of entertainment and for providing a valuable service to the IT Security industry. I.e. making it more fun!

  34. Wow - I am shocked (like when Brian Krebs left the Washington Post-type-shock!) But, at the same time extremely happy for the two of you > breaking out and treading on new ground. Can;t wait to see what you both will be up to next!

    [Nostalgic Moment} Twitter (early 2009): Huh - I remember Carole searching for malware when I was screaming about the Twitter deluge (don't know if she will remember that one) on the public interface. But, that was when I first met both of you on Twitter and have followed you ever since :)

    "The Force will be with you... always."

  35. Angela Lovell · 798 days ago

    Best of luck to you both in your new ventures & thank you for all the security advice.

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About the author

Hi. I am a social, brand and communications expert with 10 years in senior roles in the tech space. I'm currently Sophos' s Global Director of Social Media and Communities. Proudest work achievement? Creating and launching award-winning Naked Security. Outside work, I am a mean cook, an avid reader, a chronic insomniac, a podcast obsessive and blogger .