The team at HUMAN just got back from Black Hat. That’s actually an amazing statement as it has been 18 months since we attended our last big event in person. Usually before these conferences, we think about what our expectations are for the event—such as how many people we get to talk to. Afterward, we usually discuss the realities and exciting opportunities ahead. Maybe we hit our target, maybe we missed it by a few folks, maybe we crushed it. This year those conversations looked very different. Instead of just "hey it was great", it was more "hey, we thought this event wasn't going to happen or if it did, the turnout would be very light because of Delta variant, but when we got there, we found that the event—though smaller than normal—was still especially effective..." It’s not the same, but we still have so much to be proud of as the number of great conversations we had were well above our expectations.
I take my hat off to the organizers of Black Hat. The changing dynamic of COVID, putting the right precautions and health measures in place, sponsors in and out on the show floor, doing the event virtually and in person simultaneously, having speakers and end users sign up but potentially not coming at the last minute —all made Black Hat an amazing experience at the end of the day.
Why was Black Hat so successful? Every single one of the 4,000+ cybersecurity professionals that attended had a personal need to communicate and collaborate with real people in real life to solve the hardest cybersecurity problems our customers face. Those problems aren’t going away any time soon. COVID drove faster digital transformation and opened up the door for bad actors to do more damage. It’s such a pervasive issue that we hear about it in the news everyday.The way to fight back and protect the companies (and their customers) we serve, we must as an industry work together. At HUMAN, we call that collective protection. And at Black Hat, we saw it in motion. We had conversations with customers and prospects that never would have been possible over a Zoom call or at a virtual event. We learned a lot and we shared a lot, all to help up the ante against bad actors and make it harder for them to be in business. Our mission at HUMAN is to disrupt the economics of cybercrime and with every new conversation and new customer we engage with, we get closer to achieving that mission.. Events like Black Hat help accelerate our progress towards this collectively protected internet.
Whether it was at our HUMAN booth, in our suite, at dinners or at Security Leader events, everyone seemed happy to be there in-person and safely having meaningful conversations. We were especially busy at our booth and met with security leader after security leader who shared their stories of how sophisticated bot attacks are impacting every part of their business. Our response is simple: we are here to help. Here is a Black Hat interview with our Field CTO, Frank Walsh at our booth where he discusses how HUMAN’s BotGuard for Applications is able to sniff out the most human-like bots from taking over a real person’s account.
However, the moment that meant the most to our entire team at HUMAN was when the Black Hat organizers honored our late co-founder Dan Kaminsky during their keynote and announced our new Fellowship program in his name. Dan was a fierce advocate for protecting this internet, and we will continue to carry that torch.
Being HUMAN at Black Hat was a great experience for many and for me personally to see old friends and colleagues—and to make new ones after all this time. There are incredibly talented humans at cybersecurity companies and at the companies we help protect. Working together at events like Black Hat make us better in being able to fight the fight and win against our adversaries.