Hack The Planet

Because if you don't, who will?

Monday, August 14, 2017

Defcon 25 Recap

This year marked the 25th anniversary of Defcon, and my 10th year attending. Defcon continues to grow, this year eclipsing 25,000 attendees. It is incredible to see all of the different people that attend every year and how we as a community continue to grow.

During the opening keynote, Alex Stamos of Facebook hit on a few key things that really resonated with me. One of which was that we need to build up the next generation of Engineers. The people that will be coming after us, that we need coming after us, to help secure the Internet going forward.

It hit home because this summer I helped set up a Cyber Skills Exercise for a program that was built for middle school girls called “Cyber Warrior Princess”. It was really cool to see the way the kids jumped in and were excited to learn. We could learn a lot from them on maintaining our enjoyment of technology and not becoming stale. These young women are going to be attending (possibly) Defcon in a few years time, and I want the conference to be something they can enjoy.

There were many other good briefs during Defcon, Digital Vengeance being one I really enjoyed. It was nice to see that malware, RATs specifically, were as buggy as any other code and could be used to strike back (within legal limits) at your adversaries.

Another brief, a talk by Kasparov, was really inspirational and helped re-energize me. His mind is incredible and it was great to see a talk with such big ideas.

A lot of Defcon has turned into “Hallway-Con” and that is okay. With such a large community it is hard to get to see everyone, and this is one of the few opportunities through out the year that we can all connect. I know that without Defcon I probably wouldn’t get to see a number of my close friend’s in person on an annual basis as we are geographically dispersed and all busy with our careers and families. So when people call it “Hacker Summer Camp” I wholeheartedly agree.

I am excited to see where the next year takes us. Hack the Planet!

posted by holliday at 9:24 am  

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