As part of Procera’s OEM team, I headed to the Black Hat 2014 conference last week in Las Vegas. The yearly Black Hat conference focuses on information security and features training sessions and speakers who provide tips and tricks for trying to keep pace with the changes and challenges in network security.
Black Hat has grown substantially in the past few years and this year moved from Caesar’s Palace ("The real Caesar’s Palace? Will my beeper get service in here?") to the Mandalay Bay. The trade show floor mirrored the energetic atmosphere of the city outside its walls and the Sin City excitement could be seen in the faces of the thousands of attendees and exhibitors. The unspoken theme this year seemed to be “technology rock star”– the industry is definitely trying to make a traditionally less exciting sector, cool with a dark and mysterious edge.
RSA sported a skull motif on their show floor banners to represent the sinister unknown of cybersecurity, and Palo Alto Networks used an underground bunker for their booth to reflect the rock star theme. I even saw a celebrity on the show floor! Lookingglass Cyber Solutions, network security innovators whose Scout Platform provides network situational awareness and threat intelligence management, had an interesting guest in UFC champion and Expendables star, Randy Couture. Couture represented his Xtreme Couture GI Foundation at the Lookingglass booth, a charity that raises money and awareness for American troops who were wounded in battle.
Despite the different marketing spins on “cool” network security, the show focus was apparent – Black Hat is very security-oriented.
We attended the show to meet with prospects and customers for our Network Application Visibility Library (NAVL) DPI engine. NAVL has numerous use cases for integration into the network equipment space and network security is one of the use cases that can benefit the most from the integration of our intelligence technology. If you don’t know what applications are running on your network, how can you prevent security breaches? That’s where NAVL comes in, providing true, real-time, Layer-7 visibility so that you can take action and do what you do best.
The high caliber of Black Hat 2014’s attendees and exhibitors definitely made this show one of the year’s best. For those in the security industry, Black Hat 2015 is not to be missed! We are already looking forward to next year’s event.