As professionals, researchers, and hackers from around the globe gather in Las Vegas next week for Black Hat USA, DEF CON, BSides LV and myriad other meet-ups, networking events and parties, the “community” element of InfoSec will be on full display. Black Hat is proud to both celebrate and support our community and this year we’re giving our attendees even more opportunities to help us give back to individuals and non-profit organizations that represent our future. Check out some the programs taking place this year:

Electronic Frontier Foundation: For the second year in a row, Black Hat will be donating $50,000 to the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF); coming from a portion of the proceeds from our Business Pass sales, this donation is made possible by the community. Leading up to, and during, Black Hat USA 2015, EFF provides pro bono information and guidance to Black Hat researchers relative to the legal implications of security research or presentations being made.

Student Scholarship Program: From a combination of speaker nominations and direct applications, we will be welcoming 153 students/academics to Black Hat USA 2015 through complimentary full Briefings passes. These students demonstrated a passion for Information Security and/or a history of related coursework and experience. The Scholarship Program now runs at our three core annual shows (Asia, USA, and Europe) and was inspired by our very own Review Board member, Jeremiah Grossman, when he stated that he would no longer speak at industry events unless the event hosts agreed to offer two free passes on his behalf to students. We are also now accepting applications for Black Hat Europe 2015: blackhat.com/eu-15/specialevents.html#scholarship.

Academic Welcome Breakfast: Wednesday morning, before the Keynote we are hosting a breakfast and orientation for 200 Academic Briefings Pass Holders. The Academic Welcome Breakfast will include a short program featuring an exclusive Black Hat USA highlights preview from Black Hat General Manager, Steve Wylie and Review Board Member, Trey Ford.

Future Female Leaders Scholarship Program: New for 2015, Black Hat and The Executive Women's Forum launched the Future Female Leaders Scholarship Program. With the mission to attract, retain and advance women in the Information Security, IT Risk Management and Privacy industries, this program awarded 27 full Black Hat scholarships for female students.

Panel - Beyond the Gender Gap: Empowering Women In Security: On Thursday, August 6th Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading will lead a discussion on empowering women in Information Security. Panelists Justine Bone, information security executive and technology expert; Joyce Brocaglia, founder of the Executive Women’s Forum and CEO of Alta Associates; Jennifer Imhoff-Dousharm, co-founder, dc408 and Vegas 2.0 hacker groups; and Katie Moussouris, Chief Policy Officer, HackerOne, will provide real-world insight and strategies both for women who want to advance their security careers, and for women interested in entering the field. For more information and to register visit: blackhat.com/us-15/womens-panel.html.

Youth for Technology Foundation T-Shirt: All proceeds from the exclusive Black Hat USA 2015 T-shirt sold in the Black Hat Merchandise store will be donated to Youth for Technology Foundation (YTF) to help bring technology and education to low-income communities in the U.S. and rural communities in developing nations. Stop by the store August 3-6, 2015 in Reef D & E to purchase your limited edition T-shirt for a good cause.

Girl Develop It Raffle: Black Hat will be donating a gift pack prize which includes exclusive Black Hat branded swag and a Black Card for a raffle hosted on-site by Girl Develop It (GDI). All raffle proceeds will be donated to Girl Develop It to provide affordable and judgment-free opportunities for women interested in learning web and software development. Tickets can be purchased at the raffle desk kiosk adjacent to the Information Counter on Black Hat Boulevard on Wednesday, August 5 and until 14:00 on Thursday, August 6. The winner will be notified via email by 15:00 on Thursday.

Black Hat strives to diversify, inspire, and connect attendees and the larger information security community, and our hope is to give back to the organizations that support our mission. We invite all attendees, sponsors, speakers, media, partners, and other participants to help make a positive difference as we come together for the most exciting week in InfoSec.

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