After spending nearly three decades in telecommunications, veteran businessman Kevin Gordon turned to cybersecurity, taking his vision and life’s savings across borders to fight online attacks. In the Caribbean.
“I have seen an increase in cyberattacks during my tenure. Equipment has been purchased to strengthen defenses from the outside in, but nothing has been done to protect from the inside out, which which left workstations, laptops, servers and mobile devices helpless. Also, I couldn’t find anyone in the Caribbean at the time who could respond effectively. Something had to be done about it ”, explained the CEO of a cybersecurity company, Simply Secure, to The Sunday Gleaner.
With passion and innovation at the helm, the Caribbean-owned company is on a mission to protect every business against all attacks. So far, the company has provided armor radius to more than 20 countries, including the Caribbean, the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.
But success, they say, is a journey, not a destination. And Gordon can certainly relate, having led a fascinating, heartbreaking and truly inspiring life.
Born in Kingston and raised in Allman Town, his father left when he was three and he hasn’t seen him since. In true motherly fashion, her mother took over as a parent, defending her role as a single mother.
By the time Gordon was six, his mother was remarried to a man he calls his father to this day. “We weren’t rich, but we were well off,” he shared.
But, as he approached adolescence, the teenager brought out his rebellious side. He passed the common entrance exams to the Lycée d’Ardenne but was eaten away by the pressure of the peers around him: “I joined bad company, I skipped school, I climbed under the grid and I went down to the game stores. I finally got kicked out of high school in ninth grade.
The student moved on to Dunrobin High School, where he says he went down the same path in a mess. Two years later, his father was able to give him the opportunity to attend Dunoon Park Technical High School, now called Dunoon Technical High School. This is where his life took a transformative turn, changing the wayward trajectory to one of ambition, aspiration and determination.
“I had found the Lord Jesus Christ at the time and started to settle down,” he confessed. After receiving six subjects at the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) level, he graduated with honors and was subsequently recruited by Cable and Wireless Jamaica Limited.
The young professional managed to complete the program successfully, and the company was so impressed with his work that he was sent to continue his studies at the University of Technology, formerly known as the College of Arts Science and Technology (CAST ) in his day, via full scholarship. By the grace of God, he continued to excel and dedicated 14 years to telecommunications.
In 2003, life dealt him a terrible blow. During his last year of studies in computer science and information technology, he had a car accident, which ended in a broken leg (three places) as well as a crushed lung. “I spent three months in hospital and nine months on crutches. I studied in hospital and at home for finals, climbing three flights of stairs on crutches to pass exams, where I then graduated with honors,” he revealed.
The telecommunications game changer was drafted three years later by Digicel as a wireless engineer. From there he was promoted to IT and Communications Project Manager in 2013, traveled to the British Virgin Islands to support the team and was promoted to Head of Business Operations in 2015. The then CEO asked him to stay, and so he did, becoming CEO, then CEO, in a record 18 months in 2017. “I was the first Caribbean national promoted to CEO for this market,” he said. he proudly added.
After weathering Hurricane Irma that year, losing his home, and sleeping in the car with his wife and children for days, he moved his family out of this country and poured his energy into recovery efforts. his company.
However, with 14 years in his career again, Gordon took his chance and launched his own company in 2019, to tackle the misconceptions and complexities of cybersecurity.
The organization, based in Florida in the United States, has managed to pivot its operations, especially during the height of the pandemic, by moving security systems and tools to the cloud and creating secure access for the staff can work remotely, while establishing a centralized system. cloud infrastructure to manage customer calls, emails and responses. “Keeping our business open during COVID-19 has been the biggest challenge yet. But we have seen significant growth in our operations. And the changes have allowed us to keep prices reasonably low while maintaining resilience,” he said.
Committed to hiring its own employees, 10 employees of its 20-member team are located in Jamaica. The contractor is even involved in outreach initiatives, providing support to the Pregnancy Resource Center of Jamaica (PRCJ), with Executive Director Christina Milford, in maintaining and securing their computers and systems, as well as cash donations if needed. Motivated by God and his family, Gordon is inspired to leave a legacy of exemplary achievement: “I want others, not just my family, to understand that ‘If I can do it, so can you!’ ”
Regarding how education shaped his way of thinking, the businessman had this to say: “I would never consider myself an academic. I loved plugging and breaking stuff. Growing up, my parents brought home a lot of electronics and I wanted to know how to fix them. It was this learning experience that was further fostered at Dunoon Technical. He lit a spark. I found there was a place for someone like me to explore and hone their technical skills a bit more. I thrived in areas like technical drawing and electrical technology. So Dunoon released the Kevin you see today.