Infosec, the annual IT security trade show, has always been a place to do deals rather than to unveil new research or make significant product announcements. Over the years the conference has attracted a steady stream of high-profile speakers - last year former Home Secretary David Blunkett featured in the line-up. With the …
Except Infosec is free..?
Slight issue with your reporting here, Mr Leyden.
Infosec is actually 'free' to attend whereas BlackHat, RSA and their ilk are all pretty expensive to attend.
So for those of us not working in minted private organisations who can afford to send their infosec professionals to several paid for conferences a year, Infosec is pretty darned useful.
Lets face it, the fact that CPEs can be earned for attendance at the various presentations and seminars is also pretty useful and occasionally, there is the odd gem.
You've missed out the most important reason for attending....
The mugs, biros, t-shirts and assorted paraphanalia.
Lots of marketing geeks there, and if you walk in with a 'Head of IT Procurement for Megacorp' badge, you will come out with all the frisbees, toy helicopters and assorted IT peripherals that you need for the next year....
I'll be there tomorrow
Hopefully, there will still be some good stuff left to loot when I get there tomorrow!
I'm off on summer holiday soon; I could do with a couple of polo shirst (t-shirts at a push) - and I don't mind whose products I advertise!
Lots of Free Pens!
Had a great time walking around infosec today, but it was full of more people trying to just 'scan' my badge so they could fire me over lots of marketing rubbish, it's a shame there wasn't any decent announcements and when watching a few of the 'talks' it was apparent this is designed for clueless business owners and less savvy IT staff to look at products that will do the jobs for them.
Plenty of fantastic products, some nice looking girls and some fantastic people to talk to, but overall I am a little disappointing by the level of 'tech' on display for such a hyped event..
at least the weather held out, plenty of free pens and the odd trial software as well as a awesome little rubiks cube!
On the Nth wall, just a bit before Pizza Express. Well worth a tenner.
I couldn't agree more
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!
Like the author I have been going to the show since the first year. I sadly missed last year but over the years I've grown more and more frustrated with it.
The number of speakers is falling, the number of talks and theatres also falling. The interactive workshops have all but dried up and now it's all about the 'sell'.
I understand that is needed to 'pay' for the show but there needs to be more of a balance. I feel as though unless you have a shopping list this show is now a waste of time.
As for the "scanners" I let them scan away; my multifuel burner will eat everything they send :)
For you goodie hunters out there what you get these days is pretty pathetic to the early days. A few pens hardly compares to free shirts, hardware and software we've seen in the past.
Unless the format changes I wont be going next year, free or not. CPEs or not.
I was there yesterday and would agree entirely - I've been going on an off for the last 10 years and its steadily getting less worth it. I now largely use it as a chance to check on roadmaps for solutions that we already have deployed - although with people like MS now absent even thats starting to have a reduced value.
I think I'll move back to attending every two years - and thats now pretty much purely because I like to be able to quiz the PWC guys after they release their security breach survey (which desipite a number of flaws is still one of the more useful trending surveys to use internally when expressing threat trends and competitor practice). Although given that now they are streaming that presentation live I might not even bother for that anymore.
Infosec not all that bad
While I agree its not brilliant, Infosec is certainly worth much more than its entrance fee (i.e. nothing) and I dont think the same can be said for every other event.
Is the idea soley to showcase new tech? Seriously, assuming a maturing market there arent really going to be any genuine innovations. Firewalls, routers, ironkeys, shredders etc. Not really much you can do sex up this sort of thing.
I go to see what products are available when a client of mine asks "what can I get to do XYZ" I can give them a good answer - especially when its something I dont do very often. The thing that let me down the most was the standard of freebie, obviously this has suffered the dire economy.... But the net effect is that companies that went the extra mile (such as giving me a set of handcuffs) will stick in my mind and be the first I mention.
Also, I dont think you did justice to the workshops, discussion den and university research presentations. Some of these were excellent and certainly worth the £3.20 it cost me in Oyster card fees to visit the show.