Riyadh to host infosec heavyweights at Black Hat MEA show in November Riyadh to host infosec heavyweights at Black Hat MEA show in November
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Riyadh to host infosec heavyweights at Black Hat MEA show in November

Riyadh to host infosec heavyweights at Black Hat MEA show in November

Visitors can expect a packed agenda with cybersecurity training, hacking competitions and sessions with leading international speakers at the event

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Black Hat, the international informational security event series, is scheduled to be held in Saudi Arabia, taking place from November 15-17 at the Riyadh Front Exhibition Center.

Black Hat MEA is set to welcome 30,000 visitors, making it the largest cybersecurity event in the region.

Following the success of @Hack, Black Hat MEA will host over 250 exhibitors and more than 200 speakers this year. The event will also host international tech giants, including Cisco, IBM, Spire, Infoblox and more.

The event is the result of a partnership between the Saudi Federation of Cybersecurity, Programming and Drones (SAFCSP) and Informa Markets.

“@hack set the bar for cybersecurity events across the region in 2021, surpassing our expectations across all measures. This success reflects Saudi’s position as a growing centre of global cybersecurity excellence & the global ecosystem’s confidence and curiosity in what we are building from the grassroots up” said Faisal Al-Khamisi, chairman, SAFCSP. “The credibility of evolving @hack to Black Hat MEA is a powerful indicator of our intentions within the cybersecurity space. This partnership will spark innovation, supercharge our capacity building and develop investment opportunities which we are excited to share with the world in November.”

He added: “IBM recently reported that a data breach in 2022 can cost a company an average of $4.35m. This cost is at its all-time highest now and sits at a 12.7 per cent increase from 2020. In today’s digital powered world, this is an alarming situation for all of us, but especially for those who are not aware nor possess the tools needed to protect their sensitive data. This is where Black Hat MEA comes in and cements its position as a must-attend event to generate awareness, create understanding around the importance of cybersecurity and educate on how to safely use tomorrow’s digital space to its maximum potential.”

Mike Champion, regional EVP of Informa Markets, added: “Last year, we launched the largest infosec show of 2021, worldwide. This year, it’s grown even more – more than 25,000 visitors have seen it with their own eyes, there’s now only one event that gives you so many elite hackers and CISO speakers, so large a community, such a variety of hacking tools, so much prize money, such a big buzz – and that’s Black Hat MEA in Riyadh.”

Event attendees will get the chance to meet a line-up of world-renowned speakers including CISOs of Equifax, Boom Supersonic and Lufthansa, Jamil Farshchi, Chris Roberts and Naby Diaw respectively; Dr Alissa Abdullah (Dr Jay), deputy chief security officer, Mastercard; Ira Winkler, chief security architect, Walmart; and Timothy Brown, VP and global chief information security officer, SolarWinds among others. The event will also welcome David Colombo, CEO of Colombo Technology.

The show will host demonstrations and product launches of the latest security solutions in areas such as software, services and training.

Black Hat MEA will feature training sessions held by Black Hat-approved trainers in a hands-on environment with training partners such as Offensive Security, we45, Orange Cyberdefense and Madiant; and the Executive Summit, which will host over 200 senior leaders in information security.

Other highlights include Arsenal, a developer space where the latest open-source tools and products are showcased by developers along with a hands-on experience; briefings, where infosec experts present research on industry trends, hacking tools and security vulnerabilities; and Capture The Flag, a jeopardy-style hacking tournament for over 1,000 participants to enhance their ethical hacking skills at different difficulty levels for a SAR 700,000 prize fund.

Other competitions include the Bug Bounty Cup, with a prize fund of SAR300,000 and the Start-Up competition where the top pitches present to seasoned judges, angel investors, tech experts, and government stakeholders for a cash prize of SAR90,000.

The event will also hold a merchandise design competition for talented digital artists where they can create artwork exclusively for the Black Hat MEA Cyber Heroes. The winning design will also be printed as a limited collection.

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