Well yesterday was a big day for me. It was my first time attending RSA Conference in the US. I have attended RSA Europe many times and was looking forward to seeing how different the US conference is to the European one.
All I can say is that everything is BIG, and when I say big I really mean big. Firstly the Moscone centre is absolutely huge, I have got lost a number of times going from talk to talk. Then the number of delegates is astounding. At RSA Europe there is normally between 1,000 to 2,000 delegates. Here there are approximately 15,000 delegates. The social element of RSA US is astounding too, nearly every vendor is hosting a party of some kind.
Speaking of vendors the exhibition hall is huge. I went onto the floor at 11:30 to simply walk from stand to stand to see if there was anything that was cool or innovative and it was not until 2:15 that I finished my exploration. Unfortunately I did not see anything too cool or innovative. In fact I found it telling that the most exciting technology that I came across was an original Enigma machine displayed on the at Thales stand. To think that a technology that is now over seventy years old creates more excitement and buzz than many modern solutions is a sad indictment of where we are in the security industry today.
Finally the theme for the event is BIG and by that I mean it seems most vendors and talks are all focusing on Big Data and its implications for security. I would say though that big data is not what we need to focus on but rather big information. Data without context is just that, data, and is something we cannot act or work with. Data with context is information and that is something that we need to identify threats, incidents and trends so we can better secure our systems.
So far RSA Conference has been very enjoyable with the chance to meet many people I know online in real life and to meet and talk with vendors directly. I am looking forward to seeing what the next few days bring.