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The Need for Security Field Day

Why is it important to learn about security? Almost seems rhetorical at this point, doesn’t it? Why should I care about identity management, perimeter security, physical access, workload security, VPNs, biometric vulnerabilities, or any one of the ten thousand other terrible things out there? In part it’s precisely because we don’t know what’s going on that we should be scared and curious about how to prevent it.

Remember the golden age of ignorance when we just wrote our passwords on Post-It notes and taped them to our CRT monitors? Or made our passwords “12345”? How about not worrying about who was accessing the file server because Internet speeds were so slow that data exfiltration was impossible at scale. Ignorance of the issues was indeed bliss.

How about today’s world? Well, if we don’t have our login credentials stolen from a shared wireless network at a coffee shop we have to contend with our credit card data being exposed along with our Social Security number in a huge data breach and being sold on the dark web. And that’s after a piece of malware on our laptop has infected fifty of our friends and business contacts with all manner of nastiness thanks to a lapse in antivirus signature updates.

Education Is Key

It may sound all “doom and gloom” when you look at the state of enterprise security today. Some days it does feel like the barbarians are at the gate and they brought some sophisticated weaponry. They want to tear it down, pillage the pieces, and move on to the next target. Just to watch the world burn.

But, like G.I. Joe said in the 80s, knowing really is half the battle. You have to be aware of what’s going on. Not just the bad stuff either. It’s far too easy to get overwhelmed with bad story after bad story about what is going wrong in the enterprise. But there is hope. There is a light that shines on all the dark things going on out there.

Think about the first time you told your parents or grandparents not to forward spam or reply to shady looking emails. Even if they did it a few more times after your “lesson”, they eventually picked up on the stuff that is bad or needs to be deleted instead of read. Pretty soon they got really good at spotting the stuff they used to fall for. A little bit of education goes a long way.

Likewise, for those of us that sit on the front lines day in and day out, we have to be educated about the latest things on the horizon. It only seems hopeless when we don’t know how to combat the things that we see every day. If we think there is no solution we might give up. But there’s a solution on the horizon for that.

Security Field Day Is Now

If you follow Gestalt IT, you know about the Tech Field Day event series. You know that Stephen Foskett and I, along with the rest of our amazing team, try to bring the best and brightest influencers in IT to the table with companies doing amazing things in networking, data center, storage, wireless, and more. There has always been an undercurrent of security that has been woven into many presentations about the various Tech Field Day events but it was never at the forefront of the entire event.

That all changes in December. Security Field Day will be happening December 12-14 in Silicon Valley. For the first time, security is center stage. A group of amazing security community influencers will be coming to town to learn all about the great things that forward-thinking companies are working on.

So, how is this different from every other conference? Well, followers of Field Day know how important the delegates are to getting to the point of the technology right away. A stroll through the show floor of RSA this year highlighted so many companies working on AI or Deep Intelligence that it boggles the mind. I’m not sure why a padlock needs AI features, but I’m sure there was one on the floor somewhere. The delegates at Field Day are able to see through the marketing and get right to the point of the technology.

Security Field Day is also all about the live audience. Starting on Wednesday the 12th the entire event will be streamed live. You can watch the video, follow along with the presentations, and ask questions live on Twitter using the hashtag #XFD1. The delegates are always very responsive about relaying those questions into the room to ask the presenters directly and get you the answer. Field Day delegates really do represent the community at large.

Bringing It All Together

You don’t want to miss Security Field Day coming up in December. There is a great opportunity to learn all about the latest in security from smart, technology-driven people. And you get to hear live thoughts and feedback from some of the brightest people in the security space. You don’t want to miss this opportunity. Tell your friends to tune in as well at and let everyone know what you think!

About the author

Tom Hollingsworth

Tom Hollingsworth is a networking professional, blogger, and speaker on advanced technology topics. He is also an organizer for networking and wireless for Tech Field Day.  His blog can be found at

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