The Inventive Journey
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"Take responsibility for everything. In the end, it's yours. You're responsible. If you do that, no matter how bad things go, there's a path. I am still standing, 14 years later, because I did that." Listen to Chris Murphy, a serial entrepreneur that focuses on small businesses, as he shares tips from his experience.
The Inventive Journey
Starting and growing a business is a journey. On The Inventive Journey, your host, Devin Miller walks with startups along their different journeys startups take to success (or failure). You also get to hear from featured guests, such as venture firms and angel investors, that provide insight on the paths to a successful inventive journey.
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take responsibility for everything in the end it's yours you're responsible yep if you do that no matter how bad things go there's a path I'm still standing 14 years later because I did [Music] everybody this is Devon Miller here with another episode of the inventive journey for those of you new to the podcast I'm Devon Miller the host I am a patent and trademark attorney founded my own law firm Miller IP law as well as a serial entrepreneur that focuses on helping startups and small businesses however I can including protecting their businesses patents and trademarks today on the podcast we have Chris Murphy chris is a cybersecurity person that does a lot of in that work and that in that realm of coming up with the great and breakthrough technologies that will hopefully change the world so welcome Chris hi how are you I do it well so tell everybody a little about yourself as far as you started out doing cybersecurity well I started out joining the army to be a mapmaker I was a part of graphic draftsman I've did a little bit of everything you're not in the army and in 81 in computers were just coming so I learned how to build my first computer with my uncle out of Popular Mechanics that's how I came to computers I've been doing it ever since but I've also had to hold the job along the way to survive as I got to where I am so I've been through the journey of the internet watching it evolve and grow as I've been through the journey of watching what were $4000 computers that you can buy for about 30 cents today in a cheap throwaway calculator you know the world has evolved I remember when we first were thinking about the internet we were a BBS's I had two modems one came in and one went out and I leaked to other PBS's so I've been through the road so along the way the internet evolved hmm something was missing and that's kind of where I fit in in that evolution process we skipped a step and that step that we skipped keeps coming back to hurt us so before we dive into jumping back so you went into the army and we didn't even talk about that beforehand so that's an interesting one you went into view mapmaking how did you then make the transition from map making or doing maps over to computers and getting involved with that when I get out of the army after my three years in Fort Belvoir in Fort Bragg there wasn't a whole lot of work in the early 80s it was a factory I left for the army to leave a factory hmm when you come from a factory town those are your options so I went back to the factory but I had up friends that I met through the military started teaching me about computers so one thing led to another a couple of Popular Mechanics went my way and then we start talking about how to assemble them and it turned into a conversation that's still going on at this point in my life oh cool so all from all from going back to the factory having a few people that were interested in sharing that with you to now leading you down the path to doing cybersecurity and in the whole world of how to protect everybody's data yeah the army was critical in learning what security protocols meant if nothing else the army does know how to do secure new security protocols or at least put a good emphasis on that so you get into computers and you start down that path and then so tell us a little bit more about that so you know you started working at a factory started as a hobby and how did that lead to kind of where you're at today I left the factory for RadioShack so I could manage a RadioShack and learn about play with their computers because their computers were better than the ones that I could build it build an expensive habit and I was living in a Radio Shack buying parts anyway remember RadioShack they don't exist anymore I do remember RadioShack so I got that young so it is my home so I went in there and you know as I was learning more about or more about computers these 10 and 12 and 14 year olds would come in and do things with these computers that just blew my mind I was like wow you can do that and it just kept being okay if you can do that I can do this with it and it just was a continual learning process you know it's the nature of everyone's life if you're not always learning I can guarantee you one thing you're slowly decayed because the world is not gonna stop so no that's a very true statement you always got to be adapting evolving and learning otherwise you're gonna get left behind because the world's not gonna stop and wait for you to catch up so that I completely agree with so get it you're shakin with the travelers they did insurance and then I went to I did manufacturing programming basically bringing the first computers to lines for the Japanese in America with the Tochi stealing I'm a moto fine blinking and then evolved into this idea which then consumed the last decade and a half of my life all right so let's talk a little bit about that that's a long time to consider every single idea to consume your life it's not a bad thing it just a long time so you got into and how did you originally kind of come up with the idea I mean you've been obviously working with computers for a while and I've been in that atmosphere but how did you kind what got you to kind of start on that idea down that path my subconscious assembled a bunch of information I had in a way I never considered and beat me to death in one night in a dream literally and this is not a joke I get up in the morning and at that point in time my computer desk was literally right next to my bed because I rolled out of my chair to sleep I rolled over started typing and my my wife kept saying what are you doing tonight oh just leave me alone I got to type this I typed for five days hit a button and they didn't know what I created I swear to god that's the truth hmm that's I got here teach myself the rest of the way what the hell it was and as I learned it blew my mind how profound a your mental knowledge that you bring in all day from all these sources can be reassembled even when you're not paying attention well that is interesting there is certainly an aspect of life where you learn a lot along the way and you don't always know how you will apply it or how it will be applicable and then a lot sometimes it just all comes together and that the perfect storm so to speak or the perfect fashion and that's interesting that it done it all started with a dream so you have the dream you sat down write it all wrote it all out spend some day or a few days on it and then he had to figure out how to implement it so then how did you take that dream and start to make it a reality first I had to show it to some people to explain to me what I created I'm not joking I really didn't understand I somehow applied physical world security protocols to Internet activity okay and that still hasn't been done by anyone else so if you're to have the audience that's you know let's say they're not as computer or tech savvy or don't know as loan lingo as much what would be your very high level or explanations for people as to what you worked on and creative okay if I can ask you three questions I can answer your question with them okay oh it's always always interesting to answer a question or what the questions I go ahead the premises I'm gonna give you a monster box with 500 gold coins in it okay and you can't put it in the bank mm-hmm you can't tell anyone what are you gonna do I'm gonna go spend it as quick as I can oh let's preface that one more wherever you put it you have to put it on a scale and every month you can take ten coins out so for the next fifty months you can have ten ounces of gold that whatever market value is at any point if you ever take more than ten out it all gets taken back now what are you gonna do with it I'm gonna take my ten and then go hot air go bury it or hide it as quick as I can so nobody else finds it until I need it for the next month okay so you're gonna restrict access sir okay now who are you gonna tell about it um probably my wife I'll probably be about it or unless I unless uh unless I maybe my parents maybe my wife maybe my kids maybe not a few so your get dressed so after you restrict access you're gonna choose who you're gonna authorize to have that information sir okay those two questions are what's missing in the Internet okay you'll have to expound a little bit on it so go ahead my bank holds all the treasure of every customer mm-hmm sure they put a website portal so anyone in the world can log on mm-hmm but they know who all their customers are sure okay why do you let's just say you're a small local bank 5,000 local customers really you're the heart of what the banking system should be hmm but you've got a website that introduces 17 billion people actually it's closer to 20 billion devices to your website portal where your customers are so you start your cyber security with 20 billion potential attackers so that you can let 5,000 people get on mm-hmm our security fails yeah so if I were to almost push back or ask the question but I mean the reason usually online that you're doing it is because you're trying to balance not making it too arduous to get access to your money right meaning if I if I put enough barriers and make you know 20 factor authentication you'll make it very hard for accent you know how to get in but nobody will ever want to use the bank because it's gonna take me an hour and a half to log into my account user so how do you make that balance let me agree more that's always the pushback so another question gives you the answer when you go to Walmart and get to the cashier does the cashier reach in your pocket take out your wallet extract the money and put the wallet back in your pocket where do you reach in your pocket pay them and put your take your debit card put it back in your pocket and walk away I certainly hope it's the latter okay but if you're online and easy any entity on the Internet can send data to the bank and the bank assumes you approved it hmm why would it be so difficult for you to open your wallet plug your you plug your debit card into your USB C hit one button and say hey Bank I'm present right now you can approve the charge and then unplug it and put it back in your wallet and when you're not plugged in the bank knows you're not present so you can't you're running a charge no you could certainly do that I mean that with the exception if if somebody sold your card and they did it on your behalf then you they could does still do fraud but it would at least there's no way to eliminate fraud but if you eliminate the guess sure we'll eliminate over three million dollars an hour an online credit card fraud I get that that's certainly that's the security protocol so the question is if you take that number and extrapolate it and then you take all the charge backs and everything else is sucking 190 billion dollars a year out of the economy in fact worth ignoring two basic protocols you restrict access and you actually identify someone rather than assuming if data arrives it came from the person that has the right so let me give you the I'll play devil that and you're getting an attorney that likes it devil's advocate so I'll play devil's advocate for a minute so if your to do that and then you were so let's say you take this an area where you have basically a card reader if you're at home you want to log you know you don't have a card reader don't need a card reader okay okay you're you're taking the concept that we're talking about and applying it to the way you look at it why is it debit card shaped the way it is or credit card shaped the way it is it's shaped that way so it can go through a card reader in an almost entirely digital world where you're doing literally almost everything through a USBC port mm-hmm or our USB port so why keep the form factor of a card when you can change it to a USBC type of device that you just put on your keychain and plug in when you want to be present at the bank one token at the bank eliminates public access provides existence as a factor because if you have to plug it in so what we're verifying is that the card that the bank issued you exists that's a factor a non-data factor and then anything I input at the endpoint is data two factors today literally every single every single company that claims multi or two factor is using endpoint data alone which is one factor that is a scientific fact and that's why cybersecurity fails and it's not anybody's fault but if anybody admits the mistake they're afraid they're gonna end up taking the blame and soda hair realization keeps us right where we are driving off a cliff hopefully we don't we don't fully drive off the cliff yet because I still want to live for at least now so we finally broke through so alright so we take that you have what's a great idea for cybersecurity how to make it true tooth or two-factor authentication to prove that the individual is actually present as opposed to Ella beat all doing it digitally which has its flaws and you take that and then how do you turn that into a business or how do you start to actually take something that's the idea stage get it or have somebody explain it to you come over or come up with our way to implement it then how do you turn that into a business well I don't know how other people did it but I invested literally everything I own and then begged every family member and friend I knew and I continued to do that for 14 years I brought in and that led me to a venture group hmm that led me to concept government contracts GHS recommendations and then they decided that the plan that we were following to build the business turned into we can roll this thing fast for money and two people went in two different directions in the company failed I understood what we owned and they understood how much money they can make and it was to give you an example was the Bezos conversation Bezos did a conversation with a bunch of Harvard Business students in the early days of Amazon and after the proof after the conversation was done the first question was asked so are you going to sell it to one of these big companies are one of these big companies not how are you going to build it [Music] okay if the thing about being an inventor is if you've got a vision that's three years or five years or ten years down the road you have to fight an environment that's trying to shove you into the mistakes that you're pressing five years down the road that they don't see sure no and I completely get that and I mean it is it was interesting you bring up azo so I was listening to another podcast and on my own but it was talking just about how when he was introducing Amazon Prime oh you know it's gonna be two days shipping and everybody said that can't be done it's too expensive and everything else and how you're gonna lose money and it was with the knowledge but yeah we're going to lose money on the front end when we're looking to change this up and to get it to where people are get used to and we can have a system for two days shipping and it took a period of time and then it's certainly been one of their very successful products so completely get that and yeah if I were to take the the counter to Amazon which is not everybody has millions or billions of dollars to burn or to wait until the market catches up and they don't oftentimes have those that much either dollars to you know coming in or cash flow or investors there is almost a tugging tugging a pull right in the one sense you're saying I have the vision I want to build this I can see where this is going in five or ten years and yet if I don't take some money or I don't figure out and monetize it or build it into business it's gonna die in the buying right so we'll never make it to the world because it business runs out of steam runs out of money so how do you balance that I mean you can only go to friends and family or investor so long before they start to get fatigued and before you know they'll do so where is that line or how do you figure out when is when is the point to start taking and then they're figuring out a way to monetize something I always know how to monetize it I never knew when to monetize it hmm okay part of I can't help people with that decision that's a personal thing okay sir I believed in my technology and I was open to many conversations with companies that could have literally made me rich today but it would have required a compromise in the technic technology which would have in the end required a compromise in my integrity and I chose my integrity over money and every time I did that someone would say well why are you doing that I said you know I don't want to be the Oppenheimer who says don't blame me for the bomb I just did the science well right now my patents control the science if I let them turn to a bomb that I'm responsible now other people may not look at it that way but I did okay and so so then let's say you have you know the yeah the keys to the kingdom so to speak or you have the way to do it do you is it better to and this hypothetical questions are better to keep it you know for yourself or no not not let it out into the world so to speak because there's a fear that I may be used in adverse or ways right so a lot of times with technology you can introduce it and it can be used for a lot of good and it can be used for a lot of bad right so you take the internet in as example there is a lot of good is connected people right now people can connect with zoom they can try and keep doing with their business they can have email they can have access to more information than we have you know at any point previous and in history any on the other hand you can also do criminal activities you can do everything else and yet if you never existed if you never introduced the internet for fear that it would be used for bad you would also never have to good so what you know and this is for you but how do you make that balance is to hey hold it hold on to this too long it's never going to do all the good that it could out of fear of the bad I've never not been introducing it I have explained it in such detail that someone can literally pick it up and duplicate every line of code and make it work hey teaching and showing is not what it is it wasn't held back for anything other than okay everybody tracks for every move in the internet sure but they still are making an assumption they're assuming the person they're tracking is you they may track five or six people and they might intermingle five or six people and so you're really not positive about someone but you have a really good idea okay now I provide a method where I can provide absolute assurance that you are you and I could track every move you make that changes everything substantially sure and our technology provides an ability by creating a secure class in a secure environment to track literally every move you make with a little degree of assurance that takes out the assumption there's one of-a-kind device assigned to one of a kind person that has a one-of-a-kind password for your pin for it you were to first to be present that one person's device and pin has to be present if you tell someone then you're liable you know why you don't get charged for fraudulent credit card charges because the bank can't defend their process in court hey someone sends me data I assumed it was you you're responsible for it they can't defend the process of court that facilitates crime but if the bank knew every time that date arrived it was absolutely you then they'd know when not to approve it sure no I get all that no those are good point I'll still people wanted to put it into into browsing type of things and they wanted to use it to accurately content mine about an individual's activity and every time a partner came to the table that was where they wanted to go and that was someplace I we created a secure class we didn't put a spying tool with absolute assurance in the marketplace there are different things they can be used different ways in a secure environment you don't browse cuz you know you wouldn't want someone browsing through the yard where you hid your gold would you you only want the people in the yard where the people are the people you told to go in the yard sure that's the fair assumption there's over it's for a bank to say I want you to be able to browse my website when really when I'm a customer when I want to go to the bank I should plug in my tart card and go to the bank the bank doesn't need to have a website open 24 hours a day 7 days a week 220 billion people so that I can plug in a debit card to prove that I'm there they already gave me a debtor Kirk sure no that's a fair point then so jumping court so we we could go down that rabbit hole for a very long time and it'd be fun conversation but then we'd go we'd spend way too long for anybody else want to listen so we're to jump to that and say oK we've got all that in mind we've kind of gone through the pluses and minuses kind of how they're you know maintaining control for so it doesn't use isn't used for bad purposes you know booster are coming up the original idea going out friends families you know having helped to invest so what's the plan to roll it out now or what's there you know how's that how's the business going to evolve so that you can still introduce sake technology do good in the world keep the control and keep moving it forward ten months ago I went to a financial fiduciary mmm explained everything I had everything all the technology the patents the research the reports from the Department of Homeland Security all of the stuff that was like he looked at it and said holy I can't believe anybody has this much information I said what can you do I need to raise some money hmm I don't know the first thing about business and this is where a scientist always gets screwed because we think we're saying one thing business people are saying another thing and we keep talking past each other and nothing seems to work Tim Harper my financial manager guy who is now my culture person and operating company we don't talk past each other so when we go in conversations and everybody's talking past me because the scientist is hearing one thing and the business person is saying something different tim has been able to bridge that communication gap since the end we've assembled our material put our marketing plan together they've got all the published material ready to go we're probably 30 40 days from complete funding the problem was coronavirus so we would have been there already but you know is what it is just slowed things down but for me the only path to see I mean someone who was committed by law because they're fiduciaries and assigned a fiduciary agreement to act in my best interest to help me learn the things I don't know because we all have enough knowledge in areas to be dangerous most of us are ashamed to admit that we don't have enough to be knowledgeable I know where I know enough to be dangerous and don't have enough knowledge to be functional and so I had to find that piece and I found that in Tim and he found Lance and we've now started assembling and you know the only thing that I requires from everybody should deal with me in every way and everyone we deal with with integrity if you don't there's a door I don't want your loyalty me loyalty to be to me I wanted to integrity they beat me up regularly because I don't understand things and they teach me and I'm not always an easy person to teach but I also do the same thing to them and that is what I believe will bring us to the success part of this having a team that has the same clear vision and they deal with each other with integrity summarize that'd be then with the idea that basically you know the week you know what you know and you know what you don't know in the sense you know your weaknesses you know where your strengths are and then technology and the science and for the business side and that you find someone that you can trust that maybe you know can speak the language and maybe you can tour the year that's you're not focused on and then you bring them into the business to help run that part of the business that isn't your expertise your talent set so that you can have a well-rounded team is that a fair summary yes and the hardest thing for inventors to do is admit they don't know something because they know everything about what they invented yeah literally they know everything about what they invented they invented it they have to know everything well no they're miners for a lot of fun to do is they can't admit they don't know beyond what they already know so that's the hardest I was feeling did you get into the trap that you think that hey if I can come up with the world's best widget you know the best product the by definition people be pounding down my doors to do that and there's always never the case there was a business overlay to that and have the error how to navigate both sides of it and yet we think that you know we know the product and we've know everything we need to so I think that's a good point but we are bumping up Swartz a walk through that cooperative yeah the key is a cooperative relationship and what my experience until I found a fiduciary was that he's always starting to have comfort our cooperative and then turn confrontational when one part party wanted to go one way and another party wanted to go another trial they treated beginning hey it's a very good point so hey well we're jump or bumping up against towards the end of the podcast it's always always get to the end of every episode and I always want to talk a whole lot more and there's always a lot more rabbit holes to go down and a lot more fun conversations to have but as we wrap it up I always ask two questions at the end of the podcast and so I'll ask you the same as the other guests that have been on and the first one is so what's the worst business decision you made and give you the context I always ask that in the sense we always get to hear the highlights of the business how I made the right decisions or I took the right path and now you know everything worked out type of thing but we often time to learn as much or more from the mistakes that we or others that may so with that what's what would be the worst business is this business decision you've made not to time to focus early on learning what the business side with I was too focused on the technology and that's where I watched the first company fall apart is without that without someone bringing the two pieces together they just kept moving in different directions if I could go back and do anything differently I would have worked harder with the business people to keep us with the same vision okay no that's a very good good thought so I think that recognizing that early on and oftentimes you know save a business or otherwise keep you from making it you know things not working out or not having the plan is how to move forward so I think that's a very good very good point and something to learn from okay second question is if you're having someone that was wanting getting a start up maybe in cybersecurity or in the computers or technology they're just getting into it what would be the piece of advice that you would give them take responsibility for everything in the end it's yours you're responsible it doesn't matter who screwed up where it's still your fault yep if you do that no matter how bad things go there's a path I'm still standing 14 years later because I did that there's path if you know that you contributed no that's very good if you don't pass a buck and you know at the end of the day you're the one responsible for what your company and what your business does and you can make sure you know then you'll take a much different perspective of making decision so I think that's that's a great piece of advice well well with that we're gonna wrap up this episode I greatly appreciate you coming on it has been an absolute pleasure always wish we had more time but that's how life is you always wish you had more time for everything so thank you very much for coming on for those of the viewers that are those listeners and viewers if you'd like to be a guest on the podcast feel free to apply for the podcast you can just go to our website inventive journey.com and apply for those of you that are looking or along your inventive journey and need help with patents or trademarks we're a hair mill RFP we're here to help and for everybody else we wish you the best journey and good luck on taking your path thank you again Chris and it's been a pleasure to have you on thank you you English (auto-generated) All Recently uploaded Watched