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At Black Hat, our reputation rides almost solely on the quality of the signature conferences that we curate, so we strive to maintain a very high level in the speakers and briefings we accept. As a result, you know that any session that actually makes the Black Hat cut will be well worth checking out. In other words, we love all of our children.

Now that the disclaimer's out of the way, allow us to enthuse about two particularly compelling offerings we've got slated for July 25th. The first reaches back to Black Hat's origins to look to the future, while the second will welcome Mark Weatherford from the Department of Homeland Security.

Smashing the Future for Fun and Profit by Jeff Moss, Bruce Schneier, Adam Shostack, Marcus Ranum, & Jennifer Granick

In 1997, Jeff Moss put together the first Black Hat event, gathering together some of the world's sharpest hackers and infosec folks to discuss the current state of the hack. Public, private, and independent practitioners alike convened in this neutral ground to exchange research, theories, and experiences, free of vendor influences. Jeff had a knack for drawing out the best and the brightest, and we carry on that legacy today.

In Smashing the Future for Fun and Profit, we'll welcome back five of the original speakers from the earliest Black Hat events. Jeff Moss, Bruce Schneier, Marcus Ranum, Adam Shostack, and Jennifer Granick will convene not as a traditional panel, but to share their individual visions for what the next 15 years will bring the world of security. If you want to know what's next - and isn't that why you're here? - consider this a can't-miss.

The Christopher Columbus Rule and DHS by Mark Weatherford

"Never fail to distinguish what's new, from what's new to you." This is a motto Mark Weatherford keeps close in his role as Deputy Under Secretary for Cybersecurity at the Department of Homeland Security. In addition to running the National Cybersecurity and Communication Integration Center (NCCIC), the US-CERT and the ICS-CERT, the DHS works daily with companies from across the globe to share critical threat and vulnerability information. In The Christopher Columbus Rule, Deputy Under Secretary Weatherford will delve into topics that include research and training opportunities, the growing number of cybersecurity competitions sponsored by DHS, and how the DHS is always looking to hire a few good men and women.

So yes, two big ones - July 25th. We hope to see you there. In the meantime, come and get social with us on Twitter and Facebook!

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