Jason C., Global Security Operations Centre Manager, and Pranoti S., Global Intelligence Manager, work on the Global Security team at Facebook in Singapore. In this interview, we sat down with both of them to learn more about the exciting world of global security.
The Global Security team at Facebook is one of the most covert—so much so that very few people know it exists. But its mission is critical: to protect the safety of Facebook’s tens of thousands of team members around the world. From bomb threats and natural disasters to civil unrest and other security vulnerabilities, the Global Security team works tirelessly every day to address a wide range of challenges and ensure that Facebook’s people, assets, and reputation are protected.
“We’re both covert and overt for different reasons,” says Jason. “We focus on identifying issues before they become valid threats so our team members can focus on building great products. We ensure people have the peace of mind to work safely, comfortably, and productively in support of Facebook’s overall mission, while developing essential security awareness to their environment.”
Pranoti adds, “No two days are the same in our work. When a crisis happens in any part of the world, we work as quickly as possible to understand who from Facebook is on the ground, which travelers we have in that location, and if there’s an office we need to protect. Then we move into action. When we’re not managing crises, we work with our policy teams on interpreting political and security developments across the globe. We need to understand how an event might manifest on the platform and possibly trigger real-world harm, in turn helping partner teams and the company make informed policy decisions. In parallel with ensuring safety on the ground, our team works around the clock to safeguard teams who work on protecting our platform, in turn protecting people who use Facebook.”
With such a dynamic scope, what then does it take to work on the Global Security team? Pranoti and Jason share five things that you need to know about protecting one of the largest and most high-profile brands in the world.
Jason C., Global Security Operations Centre Manager
1) People who are successful in security care about building a better, safer world.
“Working in security is a high-adrenaline experience that comes with a lot of trust and responsibility, and you have to care about the people you’re responsible for. Our ultimate mission is aligned with the company’s mission of creating a safe space for the billions of people around the world using Facebook every day and we need to thoughtfully consider each decision we make. The safety of every single one of our employees—and by extension, people using Facebook—is paramount. To do well in this role, you absolutely have to care deeply about the personal wellbeing of your teammates. When something goes boom in the middle of the night, people look to us for advice. It’s up to us to show up, bring our very best each time, and enable the best decision-making possible under tough circumstances.” —Pranoti S.
“To work in security, you need to have a strong desire to help people. We have a duty to care for and protect our team members and their life safety. There’s an intrinsic value that comes with this line of work and there is no monetary value that can be measured with it. It’s the opportunity to make an impact at a deep and fundamental level that drives us to want to do what we do..” —Jason C.
2) Having a keen interest and understanding of current world affairs is key.
“To be successful in Global Security, one needs to understand the world around them. Things can change in an instant, and having an inquisitive mindset and knowledge of current world affairs is essential. In Global Security, our work shifts constantly and dynamically. Being adaptable to changing situations is crucial in delivering mitigation plans that can address different levels of threats and risks to keep our offices secure and people safe from harm. When you know what’s happening in the world, it’s much easier to assess risk and come up with thoughtful solutions in the moment.” —Jason C.
Pranoti S., Global Intelligence Manager
3) There’s no one-size-fits-all background for global security.
The Global Security team is made of people who come from a variety of backgrounds, from private sector corporate security to public sector military or law enforcement. When it comes to hiring, we focus on finding people with the right values and strong security operations experience, along with deep knowledge in specific subject areas. This could be security strategy, geopolitical analysis, due diligence, technology security, or physical security. Many of our team members come from corporate security backgrounds because they bring robust experience with security operation centers. We’re often asked if you need a military background to be successful. But at Facebook, what’s more important is that you have the discipline, work ethic, adaptability, and passion to ensure you’re constantly thinking about protecting Facebook’s people, assets, and reputation.” —Jason C.
4) At Facebook, you’re trusted from day one.
“After just three days at Facebook, I joined a meeting with senior-level executives at the company to talk about a security situation that involved two countries. My inputs were sought and trusted at the table, demonstrating the faith the company has in hiring the right people for the job. Facebook puts an immense amount of trust in team members right from the start. For this reason, we’re very selective during the hiring process. It’s never about hiring someone quickly, it’s about finding the right person. It’s reassuring to work at a company that truly values rich, diverse experience and embraces you from the moment you walk in the door.
I’ve found that having the ability to speak up is critical. I always say that courage is often undervalued, but to be successful, you have to be unafraid of failure. Facebook is a place to speak your mind, have a seat at the table, and be trusted. It doesn’t matter who you are or where you came from.” —Pranoti S.
5) Team members have an inner drive to be better than they were yesterday.
“At Facebook, we approach everything with the idea that we’re only 1% done. Each day is a fresh start and we all need to reflect on a daily basis, regardless of our position or level. Facebook relies on us to manage anxiety, expectations, and safety, and we’re constantly faced with tough decisions. To be successful is to be persistent. It’s half the battle, and there’s a lot of merit that comes with going after something time and time again.” —Pranoti S.
“Two of Facebook’s core values that resonate with me and translate well across the Global Security team are ‘Move Fast’ and ‘Focus on Impact.’ In Global Security, to truly support Facebook’s mission, we need to embody these values. This means constantly thinking about whether our actions exhibit these characteristics and questioning how we can improve our work to support the company and in turn, across the globe. ” —Jason C.