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The head of the NSA, the entity many consider to be the prime culprit in the "surveillance state," sought to persuade the crowd at the annual DefCon hacker gathering to enter government service.
To the casual observer, Black Hat and DefCon might look the same. But those who have been attending the annual Las Vegas events for years know the shows take on decidedly distinct tones. While Black Hat has turned noticeably more corporate -- yet still edgy -- over the years, DefCon has emerged as the more unruly (cooler?) of the two.
The espionage toolkit known as Flame has sparked widespread awe over its capabilities. But at least some researchers already have exhibited how malware can disguise itself as a software update to infect computers.
Hackers attending the annual DEFCON show in Las Vegas this weekend won't just have the opportunity to see stimulating presentations and network with peers - they also may be able to score a government job. According to a report in Reuters, the National Security Agency will be at the $150-cash-only event, recruiting some of the brightest computer security minds to join the U.S. government as "cyber warriors." The NSA is looking to hire 3,000 people over the next two fiscal years for roles in cyber offense and defense. But this isn't the first time U.S. government agencies have been at DEFCON to recruit potential employees. In fact, the show's founder, Jeff Moss, is also a member of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Advisory Council. On the flip side, federal authorities also have made arrests at the show.
With the highly anticipated Black Hat and DEFCON hacker conferences set to hit Las Vegas, founder Jeff Moss took some time from his busy schedule to explain why this year's events have a particular buzz to them. He discussed which presentations are on his itinerary, why public vulnerability disclosures are a dying breed, what you need to do to keep your computer secure at the shows and why one particular Wednesday night party has him ready to rock. If you're heading to the desert, you won't want to miss this podcast.
Former HBGary Federal CEO Aaron Barr has withdrawn from a scheduled appearance at the DEFCON conference after being threatened with legal action, according to a report.