What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Our second annual cybersecurity conference at WGBH focused on emerging cyber threats, technologies, and business models. Here, Kevin O'Brien from GreatHorn discusses phishing attacks.

Photo by Patankar Photography & Design

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Attendees and speakers milled around the lobby before the start of the program.

Photo by Patankar Photography & Design

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Phil Redo from WGBH Radio welcomed the crowd and kicked off the program.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

A discussion of cybersecurity "war stories" (left to right): .406 Ventures' Greg Dracon, CA Technologies' Bob Brennan, Digital Guardian's Ken Levine, and Allure Security's Mark Jaffe.

Photo by Patankar Photography & Design

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Speaking of war stories: Juliette Kayyem from Zemcar talked about her experiences in the Department of Homeland Security under President Obama. Let's just say a lot has changed.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Gus Coldebella from Fish & Richardson talked about the rise of cyber threats during his time at DHS under President George W. Bush.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Ellison Anne Williams from Enveil (right) discussed new data security approaches and how to scale them. With Sam Bisbee of Threat Stack (left).

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Rodney Lusk from Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (right) chatted with attendees. Not surprisingly, several folks were up from DC for this one.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Chris Carleton from Chen PR (center) chatted with attendees and organizers.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Cybereason's Lior Div explained the cat-and-mouse nature of cyber attackers and defenders. Also, I might pay to see him do stand-up comedy. Maybe in his spare time.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

We had plenty of time for networking in the program, as usual.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

The security world is relatively small, especially in Boston. We hope useful connections were made.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Michael Skok from Underscore VC gave a tantalizing preview of the future of blockchain platforms.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Seth Geftic from Sophos (far left) led a discussion of new threats and new tech, with (l-r) IBM Resilient's Ted Julian, Threat Stack's Sam Bisbee, and Enveil's Ellison Anne Williams.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Can you believe the Russians could hack our election without even hacking our infrastructure?

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Matt Cullina from CyberScout talked about protecting your identity and data in the age of constant cyber threats.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Our audience got involved early and often with incisive questions and comments.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Rick Grinnell of Glasswing Ventures (far left) chats with (l-r) BitSight Technologies' Tom Turner, Cygilant's Vijay Basani, and Rapid7's Jen Andre about how to secure companies' ecosystems.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Gigavation's Charles Herder reminded us that crypto and blockchain tech is moving fast, and there's potential in areas like biometrics for authentication.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

So when's your ICO?

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Yours truly chatting with Rosint Labs' Roselle Safran (center) and Raytheon's Michael Daly (right).

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

We hope discussions at the event will lead to new ideas and collaborations in security (and other sectors).

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Deidre Diamond from CyberSN chatted with attendees and guests during a networking break.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Who worries you the most, North Korea, China, or Russia? One answer: non-state or rogue attackers.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Xconomy's Jeff Engel (far left) chatted with (l-r) Michael Skok, Charles Herder, and Matt Cullina after their talks about blockchain, biometrics, and identity.

Photo by Patankar Photography & Design

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Michael Daly of Raytheon said to watch out for more phishing-type attacks after Equifax. And both he and Roselle Safran (left) are wary of attacks on critical infrastructure.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

BitSight Technologies' Tom Turner explained the usefulness of security ratings within a company's ecosystem of vendors and partners.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Audience questions were flying fast and furious: about data breaches, machine learning, blockchain, and more.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Rapid7's Jen Andre talked about security automation and orchestration; Cygilant's Vijay Basani (left) discussed what mid-market customers need in terms of security services.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Kevin O'Brien from GreatHorn showed how targeted phishing attacks are, down to their timing and setup. Also, don't send him any e-mails today.

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What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Our audience seemed to enjoy the depth and mix of security topics.

Photo by Patankar Photography & Design

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Our speakers (Gus Coldebella and Juliette Kayyem) also shared some lighter moments amid the more serious topics.

Photo by Patankar Photography & Design

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Did I mention we have food and drinks at these events? We do.

Photo by Patankar Photography & Design

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

What's Hot in Cybersecurity

Lots of discussions before, during, and after the event. See you all next time!

Photo by Patankar Photography & Design

Our annual cybersecurity conference at WGBH in Boston was a big hit last week. In times like these, security is on everyone’s mind—and it has become a critical issue in business and society.

A few takeaways from the event (but you really had to be there):

1. Expect a lot more phishing-type attacks after the Equifax breach. That’s because all that personal information is out there waiting to be used against us. Meanwhile, tech companies are trying to improve our defenses, using automation and machine learning.

2. Hacking critical infrastructure could take down a society. Look at the aftermath of Hurricane Maria and Puerto Rico to get a sense of what losing power and communications can do to a population.

3. Beware not only North Korea, China, Iran, and Russia, but also rogue attackers. Cyber defenders in government and companies certainly have their hands full. Attribution is very tricky, and now almost any kind of attack can come from anywhere.

4. The move to cloud computing and storage has changed the security game on a large scale. Big tech companies (Amazon, Microsoft, Apple, Facebook) need to show some serious leadership when it comes to data protection, privacy, and the spread of misinformation.

5. A boom and bust cycle is expected for blockchain and cryptocurrencies—but after that everything changes. That’s because new platforms are being built that could transform all manner of digital transactions, authentication, and data management. And these technologies are moving fast—don’t assume Bitcoin tech will stay the same.

Huge thanks to our co-host WGBH for the great venue and facilities. And to our platinum sponsors, CA Technologies/Veracode, Fish & Richardson, and Sophos; and to our gold sponsor, Fairfax County Economic Development Authority; and to our reception sponsor, Chen PR. We couldn’t do this without you.

Special thanks to Keith Patankar for the photos above. Enjoy, and see you next time.

Xconomy senior editor Jeff Engel contributed to this report.

Gregory T. Huang is Xconomy's Deputy Editor, National IT Editor, and Editor of Xconomy Boston. E-mail him at gthuang [at] xconomy.com.

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