Looking Forward to RSA


We’re just a few days away from one of my favorite tech events of the year: RSA. The conference will be held in San Francisco from February 13th through the 17th, making this the perfect time to tell you a little bit about what Intel will be discussing at the event.

I’ll be there with the Intel team to learn about the challenges facing the cybersecurity industry, to showcase the newest advancements in hardware-based security that we’re working on, and also to engage with our partners’ innovations.

A Conference for Security

My passion for security goes beyond a professional obligation. It’s understanding the security outcomes that Intel can enable with its technology portfolio that really excites us. Technology, whether across PC’s, devices, or consumption of cloud services, is integral to everything we do. Without strong security and smart advancements, any one element of our digital experience can compromise the whole of who we are. The industry has responded to the need, resulting in benefits for consumers and developers alike.

But much is yet to be done. If we were keeping score between cybercriminals and cybersecurity, that scoreboard would look significantly lopsided towards the criminals. With that in mind, here are just a few keynotes, seminars, and sessions that deserve your attention.

Keynote with Christopher D. Young

At the top of the must-sees at RSA are the keynote speeches. While a handful have me excited for personal (such as Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson appearing) and professional reasons (such as The Cryptographers’ Panel), I’m easily most invested in Intel Senior VP & GM Christopher D. Young’s keynote: Sweating the Small Stuff on a Global Scale.

Chris focuses on how the smallest things can have the biggest effects in our world. His panel will discuss topics such as incorrect units of measurement resulting in failed Mars missions, misplaced decimal points costing businesses small fortunes, and—most pertinent to the cause—how something as small as a baby monitor can be quickly drafted into a botnet army. It’s an extremely important keynote considering how vital Internet-of-Things (IoT) security has become in the current tech landscape.

Cyberthreat Preparedness

In a similar vein, there’s another keynote on the 15th that I’d highly recommend: The Seven Most Dangerous New Attack Techniques, and What’s Coming Next featuring Alan Paller, Michael Assante, Ed Skoudis, and Johannes Ullrich of the SANS Institute.

The focus here is looking ahead to what is inevitable in the realm of DDoS attacks and beyond, something cybersecurity professionals absolutely must be prepared for. In fact, we’re running late!

In general, cybersecurity is about living simultaneously in the past, present, and future, so getting some insight into what to expect is crucial to a successful plan.

The Women of Cybersecurity

Block out some time on the 13th between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. to attend a group of sessions titled Securing Diversity: Women in Cybersecurity. Perhaps one of the most pertinent issues for the tech industry is the need for more diversity, an issue that this seminar pointedly addresses.

Hacking Exposed NextGen

Much like Chris Young’s keynote on small things turning into massive problems, the session Hacking Exposed NextGen performs actual live demonstrations with common household tech, showing just how quick and easy it is to hack some devices.

Not to worry though as the second half of the demonstration involves showing and explaining how to safeguard each device and system with simple countermeasures. It is truly a set of skills every cybersecurity professional should have.

Privacy and Security

The last item I’ll bring up is the seminar IAPP: The New Technological Approach to Privacy. Taking place between 1:00 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. on the 13th, this seminar dives deep into the matter of privacy and how it is intrinsically connected to data security. Understanding the relationship between what users share and the cybersecurity measures in place is perhaps the most important element of cybersecurity going forward from a user perspective. I hope to catch some snippets of this in between the rest of my busy schedule.

I could go on and on about the things I’m looking forward to at the RSA conference, but that will have to wait until next time. On my next blog, I’ll provide more insights into Intel’s security presence at the conference—including advancement in exciting new areas like Blockchain—as well as some takeaways from the event. Until then …

If you enjoyed this post, follow me on LinkedIn and Twitter (@RJEche) for future insights, industry best practices, and discussions.

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Rick Echevarria

About Rick Echevarria

Rick Echevarria is transforming hardware-enhanced and silicon-based security. Prior to this role, Rick was the general manager for Intel's small business and corporate segment. His responsibilities included hardware and software engineering, product line management, business development, sales and marketing, and strategic business planning. As the general manager for Intel® Solutions Services, he built a worldwide professional services organization that helped companies capitalize on the value of Intel technologies. Rick has a bachelor's degree in industrial engineering from Purdue University and a master's degree in computer systems management from Union College.