Cybersecurity, Cloud and Connection: A CTOs guide to RSA Conference 2023

April 21, 2023
Aaron Turner
Vice President, SaaS Posture
Cybersecurity, Cloud and Connection: A CTOs guide to RSA Conference 2023

It has been over 20 years now that I've been attending and speaking at RSA Conferences. Over the course of those decades of experiences, RSAC has changed as the community has needed it. From product launches to government policy announcements, RSAC has been the place where the business world talks security. As a seasoned veteran of RSAC, I’ve curated a list of themes, must-attend sessions, and personal recommendations to consider as to navigate and prioritize your week in San Francisco.

Securing the Cloud

In the last decade, the movement of critical data and workloads to the cloud has been the most material change for information security teams. Unfortunately, most of the Red Teams and Blue Teams have not been given the resources to be successful in their attack modeling of cloud environments and deployment of measurable controls to defend against the evolving attacks.

As I look forward to this year's event, I'm excited to be honored with a speaking slot and have the opportunity to collaborate with Nisos’ CEO, David Etue. As he and I have worked together for years to brainstorm ways for security defenders to collaborate to stay ahead of attackers, we will be revisiting the Attacker ROI model that he and Josh Corman developed 10 years ago.  

During our talk, David and I will propose ways to use the Attacker ROI model to help organizations re-prioritize how Red and Blue Team resources can be deployed. I will highlight how Vectra is leading the charge with the release of our MAAD-AF open source attack framework and seek RSAC attendees’ engagement to help us push that work to the next level.

Session to Attend:  

M365 Adversary ROI: Microsoft Cloud Attack Insights (CSCO-M06)

Monday, April 24th | 2:20-3:10PM

Building Cyber Resilience with AI

Only those living under rocks in the security community could ignore the sea change that we've witnessed over the last six months when it comes to the power of using Large Language Models (LLMs) or generative AI on both sides of the cybersecurity battlefront. Whether allowing fishing campaign operators to draft compelling emails or helping SOC staff become more efficient in decompiling targeted malware, we've seen just how disruptive LLMs and AI can be. RSAConference 2023 will be defined by how these technologies enable Red and Blue Teams to be more efficient.

I'm fortunate to be working at Vectra AI, where we are at the center of applying behavioral AI to help SOC teams exponentially increase their efficiency at detecting the signal buried in the noise. With our Attack Signal Intelligence, we are working with our partners and customers to redefine how SOC analysts spend their time by avoiding the mundane, the repetitive and the boring and allowing security teams to focus on actual threats. Forbes recently recognized Vectra as one of the leaders in their 2023 AI 50, and at RSAConference, we will be showing just how we are using our research and development capabilities to supercharge how defenders can protect their most important cyber assets, even in complex hybrid environments that span on-premises datacenters and multi-cloud service infrastructures.  

To learn more about Attack Signal Intelligence, join the Vectra Team for lunch at our Open House event on Wednesday, April 26. We’ll provide the food, demos, DJ, and even a photographer to refresh your headshot.

If you’re making the rounds on the show floor, stop the Keysight Technology booth (North Expo - Booth #541) to connect with one of our subject matter experts for a live demo.

Connection, Culture, and Cuisine

For those of us who are RSAC veterans, San Francisco is a great place to reconnect on a personal level over a good meal or experiencing a learning experience outside of our field. My favorite haunts for great food to be shared with interesting people are the many Asian-inspired restaurants. San Francisco is unique in the way it provides the quality and diversity of Chinese, Japanese and Korean foods. Here’s a list of my favorite stops while I’m in San Francisco.

House of Nanking: One of my favorite memories of an RSAC dinner was when a group of us visited the House of Nanking and just let the staff choose what we ate that night. It was a great way to explore new foods that I had never tasted before and make great memories with old friends while making new ones. If you are looking for similar quality cuisine a bit closer to the RSAC action, House of Nanking's sister restaurant Fang is a great place to enjoy high quality and creatively unique Chinese food.  

Barbeque in Japantown: To get away from the crowds and enjoy another Asian treat, head up to the Japanese and Korean barbeque joints in Japantown. There is nothing more primal than having a bunch of friends sitting around a fiery grill, roasting your own food while you talk about the challenges, successes and failures of the last year and look forward to the year to come.  

Contemporary Jewish Museum: If you're looking to escape from the madness of cybersecurity for a moment, the Contemporary Jewish Museum is just a block away from the Moscone Center. Last year I strolled through one of the coolest Jim Henson museum exhibits there and it made me very nostalgic remembering all the times the Muppets made me laugh as a kid. They have some more serious-minded exhibits this year, but I always find that museum to be thought provoking and is a great way to decompress after a few hours on the expo floor.  

Museum of Modern Art: For the art lovers, the Museum of Modern Art is also just a few steps away, and the exhibit spaces are generally quiet places to take in the amazing artwork.

So, if you're a relative newcomer to the RSAC experience, I would suggest making the time to take in everything RSA has to offer. I look forward to seeing you in San Francisco, and hopefully you’ll join us at the Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center where Vectra will be stationed all week.