Person 2 Person: Steve Shillingford

Person 2 Person: Steve Shillingford (Photo provided by Anonyome Labs)

(KUTV) Steve Shillingford is the founder and CEO of Anonyome Labs, a cyber security startup here in Utah.

They are on a mission to protect people's identity online with their technology.

Shillingford was the CEO of Solera Networks, a cyber security company where they "essentially built surveillance software."

The software was design to protect large corporations and even some government agencies from threats.

"Over time, I saw that those cameras, if you will, sort of started to turn inward," Shillingford explained. "I was uncomfortable with how that was progressing."

He eventually sold the company and "had some time to reflect" on what he wanted to do next.

He found himself playing video games with his teenage children and starting thinking about the avatars you can create on the gaming systems.

Shillingford thought to himself, "Why couldn't we do that online? Why couldn't we create these roles that allow us to control the interaction?"

That led to the creation of the Sudo app that lets people have more control over their identities on the internet.

Shillingford explains that it is not a fake identity.

"We wear different hats in our lives," he said. "And sometimes you don't want to share all the same information with all same circles."

The privacy controversy with Facebook has opened a lot of people's eyes over online privacy.

"It's creepy. I think it's unnerving," Shillingford said.

He believes Facebook should have been transparent about what it was doing with people's personal information.

"It's not that what they're doing is quote, unquote 'wrong,'" he said. "It's their obfuscation of that."

Utah is no stranger to tech companies, and Shillingford has learned what it takes to have a startup company.

"You can hire the smartest people in the world, but you've really got to get a team together that is completely focused and rallied around the mission," he said. "You've just got to be passionate."

And with a startup, Shillingford says you will get people who tell you you're crazy for what you're doing. But, he loves the "naysayers."

"The biggest motivator for me, personally, is when someone tells me I can't do something," he said.

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