RSA Celebrates 20th Anniversary

The 20th annual RSA Conference is lumbering into San Francisco next
week. It’s huge, face-to-face, dominated by educational tracks, led by
old guys, and run under the auspices of a vendor. How did the RSA
Conference get to be 20 in such good shape?

The RSA Conference is in some ways the opposite of trendy. It’s not
hosted in the cloud but is run in-person. The conference is loaded with
graduate-level educational tracks that leave non-mathematicians such as
myself impressed but slightly stunned. Contrary to the hottest
properties in our industry, the conference is not run by a bunch of
guys in their 20s and 30s but rather by guys who’ve been
around 20 or 30 years.

I can’t help but contrast the RSA Conference with an old favorite of
mine, N+I. In its heyday, Networld + Interop’s big reason for
being was to serve as a convergence to see if networked computers could
actually interact with each other. Security tools as we know them today
were barely a gleam in anyone’s eye. Just getting the equipment to
communicate was a victory. The idea of securing these systems was
usually solved by running them on private networks.

The Internet and public networking changed all that. What would become
the RSA Conference started with a tiny gathering in San Jose, Calif.,
in 1991.
As the public Internet grew and business moved online, it became quite
clear early on that security tools needed to be developed, and quickly.
The marketing battles and practical questions about how best
to secure computing resources ranged from defining the new network
perimeter to the best location for intrusion detection, to performance
questions about antivirus and anti-spam products. N+I basically slipped
beneath the waves as interoperability became the norm. The RSA
Conference has grown because the success of that interoperability still
poses difficult security questions.

For more, read the eWeek article: RSA at 20.

CIO Insight Staff
CIO Insight Staff
CIO Insight offers thought leadership and best practices in the IT security and management industry while providing expert recommendations on software solutions for IT leaders. It is the trusted resource for security professionals who need network monitoring technology and solutions to maintain regulatory compliance for their teams and organizations.

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