Spotlight Q&A with Nicole Perlroth, cybersecurity reporter at The New York Times
Back in March, we held a live-streamed panel event focussing on how the pandemic has impacted the business cybersecurity threat landscape. On the panel was Nicole Perlroth, cybersecurity reporter at The New York Times.
You can watch the event in full here, and find out a bit more about Perlroth below.
The event was part of our #BabelTalks series, which gather industry insiders, PR pros, and esteemed editors and journalists, to discuss the most pressing matters in the wide world of technology.
What makes for a good PR/journalist relationship in your view?
Homework! It really helps when people have done their homework, know what to pitch you, and (more importantly) what not to pitch you. That they don’t just come to you with press releases, but tips they’ve heard, or insightful source introductions.
What errors do tech companies make when trying to communicate with the media?
I think in the post-recession era, tech companies got too accustomed to puff pieces based on funding announcements, or new product launches. Now that tech has become so critical to our lives, the stakes are so much higher. I think the worst thing tech companies do is ignore this, or act defensive because the coverage looks at the stakes. Not sure if that’s a mistake, or just a problem we’re all dealing with at the moment.
What made you become a journalist?
I tried many other professions first (politics, law, marketing) and I just missed writing. I took a writing class at New York University (NYU) at night and the professor was a journalist and encouraged me to freelance. My first freelance piece uncovered corruption at the Dept. of New York and appeared on the front page of the Post. After that, there was no going back.
How did journalism change in 2020?
We spent a lot of time on our screens. I cannot wait to go back to travel and being able to report about the rich physical details and human elements to these cybersecurity stories.
Hot topic of 2021?
Vaccines. Disinformation. The inequities that will become apparent from how society handled the pandemic.
Highlight of your lockdown (one/two or three!)?
Finishing my book! Spending more time with my family!