What CISOs think of Black Hat MEA

by Black Hat Middle East and Africa
What CISOs think of Black Hat MEA

Cybersecurity is changing – because the world is changing. Black Hat MEA is providing an increasingly important platform for infosec professionals to get together and prepare for an unknown future with the strength of our collective experience, skill, and wisdom.

But we know you don’t want to read more marketing content created by…well, marketers. We spend a lot of time talking to the experts who make the global Black Hat community such a powerful agent of security transformation and resilience. So we asked them to share why BHMEA is so valuable to them.

Sam Curry (CISO at Zscaler) said:

“I love connecting with people, innovating, seeing the new stuff and living security instead of staring at screens. Black Hat is a chance to do that with new faces and not just the usual bunch in San Francisco and Las Vegas!”

Gram Ludlow (SVP, CISO at Marriott Vacations Worldwide) said:

“Keeping up with the dynamic landscape of security is a challenge for all security professionals. As a CISO, I seek out opportunities to hear from thought leaders and security practitioners so that I can bring a fresh perspective into my own security program.”

“Black Hat MEA gathers so many industry experts, security visionaries, and experts into one place with extraordinary content and collaboration. Attending Black Hat MEA will help me better guide my security program and enable my company to best manage cyber security risk.”

Matt Lemon PhD (CISO and VP of Cybersecurity at Huawei) said:

“I have been attending events like this for many years and I’ve made great connections and friends at them. There’s always an opportunity to learn from peers, from the talks and panels as well as to get to talk with vendors face to face and see what’s on offer.”

“It’s much easier to walk the expo floor and see products than try to arrange demo’s over video. Black Hat attracts the best presenters and attendees which provides an excellent opportunity to learn which is hard to beat by any other method.”

Matthias Muhlert (ECSO CISO Ambassador, and CISO at Haribo) said:

“Attending Black Hat MEA holds immense value to me for a multitude of reasons. First and foremost, the evident enthusiasm that permeates the event never fails to invigorate me. The attendees' open-mindedness towards a variety of topics and their unwavering ‘get it done’ attitude leave a lasting impression.”

“Additionally, the inquisitive nature of those present, who eagerly explore novel technologies and methodologies, is truly inspiring. I always leave these conferences enriched, with new ideas and renewed confidence in my own approach. There is no better way to exchange ideas and engage in thought-provoking discussions than with some of the brightest minds in the industry, who share the characteristics.”

Bjørn R. Watne (SVP and CSO at Telenor Group) said:

“Events like Black Hat MEA are highly relevant in the way they bring together top researchers, subject matter experts and thought leaders, and create an arena where ideas can be exchanged and discussed.”

“Often at your daily job you’re so occupied with everything that’s going on that it’s impossible to lift your head and have a look around. Attending one of the bigger conferences 1-2 times a year and just shutting down your emails for a few hours is very valuable in terms of gaining new inputs, knowledge and perspective. Security professionals being a lively bunch, it’s often also very possible you’ll make a friend or two as well.”

And when we asked what he’s looking forward to at Black Hat MEA 2023, Suresh Sankaran Srinivasan (Group Head of Cyber Defence at Axiata) said:

“I am truly excited about the upcoming Black Hat MEA 2023. Black Hat is one of the oldest and most credible cyber security conferences – and as a cybersecurity professional, this platform provides an invaluable opportunity to stay updated on the latest trends, challenges, and advancements in the field.”

“I'm particularly looking forward to:

  • Knowledge exchange: Black Hat brings together experts, thought leaders, and industry professionals from diverse backgrounds. I'm eager to engage in insightful discussions, share experiences, and learn from the collective expertise of attendees. The exchange of knowledge and ideas is crucial for staying ahead in the rapidly evolving cybersecurity landscape.
  • Cutting-edge technologies: Black Hat often showcases the latest cybersecurity technologies and solutions. I'm excited to explore innovative tools, frameworks, and approaches that can enhance our defence strategies. Discovering new technologies and understanding their potential to address emerging threats is always a highlight of these events.
  • Expert presentations and workshops: Black Hat attracts renowned speakers who share their insights and experiences. Attending presentations and workshops by industry experts allows me to gain deeper insights into specific cybersecurity domains, learn about best practices, and explore new perspectives on tackling security challenges.
  • Networking opportunities: It also provides an excellent platform for networking with professionals from different organisations, industries, and backgrounds. I'm looking forward to connecting with peers, establishing new relationships, and expanding my professional network. Collaboration and sharing experiences with like-minded individuals often lead to valuable partnerships and future collaborations.”

Black Hat MEA 2023: See you there.

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