I remember reading recently that Google had acknowledged having several meetings discussing aliens, specifically alien contact and alien invasion that sent conspiracy theorists off the charts with the big question; “what does this all mean?”. Many believed that the search engine giant was privvy to inside information, and as a result were setting up various contingency plans to make sure that their business remained operational should such an event take place. This included how alien contact would change the world economy, and how this contact and potential advances in technology as a result would change their business model. Most recently Google have been deciding how to adapt their service in the event of a huge natural disaster, including a scenario on how employees would react in the case of alien invasion, and California being wiped off the map!
So before you start to get worried about what this is all about, have no fear. These scenarios are simply part of set of games used to test Google’s employee’s and to see how they would react. Eran Feigenbaum, the director of security at Google, revealed to Computerworld:
“We play a lot of games here. Part of our disaster recovery plan is to assume the worst has happened. In last year’s scenario, Google was attacked by aliens and California was off the map. We asked: What do we do? How do we run our infrastructure?”
Although these may sound like outrageous scenarios, the principal reason for them is to get employee’s thinking about the problem laterally, breaking them down into their individual components and addressing the issues. This then provides them with potential insights into additional processes that could be used now to increase their own security measures. This follows an accusation that the security at Google could be improved, however Eran states that their security is “as secure, it not more secure, than what most organisations are doing today”.