Cybersecurity is one of the most important issues facing brands as they move to a digital-first world. Computer manufacturer Lenovo wants to be seen as a leader in the space, and it has put together a three-part docuseries highlighting one of the biggest hacks in cyber history.
‘The Fallout: A Real-World Cybersecurity Story’ features actor and tech investor Olivia Munn, who takes viewers through a behind-the-scenes look into the Sony Pictures hack of 2014 by the group Guardians of Peace, which led to leaked emails and created havoc in the entertainment industry. It was also a huge wake-up call to businesses and brands everywhere.
Lenovo worked with California agency The Woo to create a cautionary tale intended to spark conversation around data security and remind companies to stay ahead of dangerous breaches. The branded content series features a timeline showing three aspects of the Sony hack – the threat, the hack, and the fallout. The company was able to interview people who were on the front lines when it happened, who told the inside story of what it was like to be there the moment it all went down, along with cybersecurity specialists from around the US and even some hackers who told their perspective on the hack.
Lenovo and The Woo also looked for someone to be the face of the series, but who also had to have authenticity and credibility within the space. Munn was first on the list, because she is a tech investor and passionate about the subject.
Part one sets up the panic that Sony experienced when the hack happened. Munn comes then states: “We are in the midst of a global cybersecurity crisis. As we use ever more complex digital systems to do business, it’s leaving us open to threats we’ve never known before.”
While the thought might be frightening, it’s meant as a cautionary tale for companies to be vigilant and never let their cybersecurity guard down.
When Lenovo decided to address the issue, they looked at what competitors were doing, and one stood out – HP’s ‘The Wolf’ with Christian Slater.
“Lenovo created a focus group of IT decision makers and asked them what they thought of the piece,” said Valerie Moizel, executive creative director and partner at The Woo. “The feedback was that they were wowed by the piece because the production value was really high and it had a big movie star in it. And they were so excited that somebody actually took the time to do a high-quality piece of creative in their industry. But one of the key takeaways and learnings that we got was that there was not authenticity there…In order for them to make informed decisions, they need thought leaders helping inform their decisions. So, we decided to take a different strategic approach and make this about real cybersecurity stories.”
The team decided that they should address an issue that actually happened, so the high-profile Sony hack seemed the best place to start. To give it even more authenticity, they tapped director Matt Ogens and production company Bullitt, known for documentary-style campaigns. The three films effectively show the panic and fallout from the hack without hard-selling Lenovo. There is only a short tag at the end for its ThinkShield security solution.
Moizel said there would be a companion campaign for Lenovo’s ThinkShield and that ‘The Fallout’ would serve more as a conversation starter.
Lenovo is launching the series online and socially in North America, but is looking to expand the docuseries to highlight other hacks to bring more attention to the problem.
See the series by clicking on the Creative Works box below.