Memo to anyone thinking about a White House job with an eye to future employment: Your post-administration options are no longer confined to private-sector jobs, giving speeches or writing books. Reality TV awaits!
Take a look at Theresa Payton, who was chief information officer under George W. Bush and now has a gig on the new CBS reality show “Hunted.” The show’s premise is that a bunch of everyday folk play fugitive and try to evade a team of investigators and “hunters” whose résumés include an alphabet soup of acronyms like CIA, FBI and NSA.
Payton, who runs her own cybersecurity firm, said that even though the show is just for, well, show, she and her colleagues took the man-hunting as seriously as they would if they were tracking deadly criminals. “We did not want to be outsmarted by anybody,” she said.
Payton’s role on the show includes putting together a “target package” on the participants, mining their online profiles to identify potential friends and relatives they might contact for help and locating other information that could help find them. That kind of sleuthing isn’t all that dissimilar to what she did at the White House and what she does for clients now, said the Charlotte-based mom of three.
Sure, it’s all just entertainment, but Payton is hoping the peek into a mock law-enforcement operation will offer viewers some educational takeaways. No matter what you do, “you do leave a cyber footprint,” she said. “But you have decisions along the way about how wide that is, and people will learn tips and tricks along the way on how to protect themselves.”