Work style : Mark

Pride in protecting both Rakuten and society
Cyber Security Defense Department

Details of Current Role

My work primarily involves execution of incident response related to attacks on Rakuten’s services and internal systems, as well as preventing and detecting unauthorized access. If we discover new vulnerabilities through our vulnerability scans and monitoring, we quickly work with each development team to apply fixes, reduce risks, and implement security controls. Even when there are no issues, we work to promote the safe operation of our systems such as hardening our systems, and reviewing the introduction of security products and their execution. As the point of contact for Rakuten’s CSIRT “Rakuten-CERT,” I collaborate with external security companies and teams to contribute to improvements in corporate IT security not only in Rakuten but also in Japan and around the world. That is one of the missions of the security team.

Current Environment

A variety of attacks are always arising around the world every day. While this situation is stressful to engineers, there are constantly new attacks that I can learn from in terms of exploring security. Coming face-to-face with attackers increases my sense of responsibility that we have to constantly learn about new technologies and keep working on our skills. In some cases, the issues we solve in Rakuten also directly lead to solving problems in the EC industry and, further, at the national level. This means that my work is a valuable contribution to society, which makes me feel proud and motivates me.

Skill Improvements

When selecting and introducing security products, I have a lot of opportunities to directly communicate with engineers and architects from countries where these products are developed. Therefore, in addition to English proficiency, I can also gain a deep understanding of the nature of the product and its limits. I hold discussions with high-level engineers from global corporations such as Google, Microsoft, and Cisco Systems to take specific actions towards the realization of a safer and better internet. This provides me with a lot of opportunities to improve my skills. Moreover, I’m proactive about entirely new initiatives that have not yet been seen in Japan, so I can also improve my skills at finding new answers to security issues.

Careers at Rakuten

Diversity is a part of Rakuten’s culture that it can boast proudly to the world. I lead projects and teams that consist of truly diverse members to play the central role in engineering. This experience gives me opportunities to truly contribute to the world, which provides a richness to my life. One specific goal I have is to contribute to the creation of a service with unity between security and software interface, providing both a valuable and enjoyable experience. I'd also like to create a revolution in cyber defense, which in itself is said to be advantageous to attackers, by performing deeper analyses of various attacks and criminal techniques, automating this, and collaborating with worldwide intelligence.

What do you like about Rakuten’s working environment and its systems?
The fact that we’re free to wear whatever we like. We also have a flat organizational structure which makes it easier to make decisions.
How big is your current section, and what is the percentage of mid-career hires among them?
Approximately 75% are mid-career entry at the moment. We're a department that basically requires work-ready personnel, so we tend to have more mid-career employees than other departments, but we’re also proactively hiring new graduates and engineers with no security experience.
What do you do in your time off?
I spend time with my wife and child, study movies, or go to coffee shops. I also like planning and going on trips.