16 Wild And Wacky Scenes From Black Hat 2018

CRN takes a look back at the fun scenes and activities from the show floor of Black Hat 2018 in Las Vegas last week.


Making A Good Impression

Did you watch Symantec fry an egg on top of a router using just the heat generated from a cryptojacking simulation? Or take part in DarkMatter's smart cities simulation? Or pop open a cold beer from Tenable's ice sculpture?

Black Hat 2018 in Las Vegas sported a slew of major product, partnership and threat announcements, and 2018 was no different. But it wasn't just speeches and meetings – the more than 17,000 attendees could also take part in fun activities or get hands-on training at one of 300 booths spread across three exhibition halls in the Mandalay Bay Convention Center.

CRN takes a look at 16 of the most zany or offbeat booths from last week's Black Hat 2018 conference in hopes of bringing back some fond memories of the show.

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Eggs Over Hardware

It took just 10 minutes for Symantec to fry an egg on top of a generic router that was dangerously warm due to a cryptojacking simulation. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company found that when a machine's processing power is being used to mine for cryptocurrency, it can reach temperatures of 150 degrees Fahrenheit: hot enough to cook not just eggs, but also meat, poultry and fish.

So Nice It's Made From Ice

After raising nearly $290 million through an initial public offering in July, Tenable ensured that visitors to the Black Hat business hall were well-nourished and hydrated during the show. The Columbia, Md.-based company had a donut wall on display in the morning and a pretzel wall on display in the afternoon, and capped the day off with an ice sculpture build to hold roughly 20 bottles of beer.

In Living Color

DarkMatter put smart cities front and center in its Black Hat booth, focusing on the role cybersecurity can play in protecting residents and keeping them safe. The Abu Dhabi, UAE-based company conducted an exercise where users could alter the attack levels against a city's telecom, financial, transport, law enforcement, and utility systems, and measure the impact on the city's overall cyber-resilience.

I Want My Baby Back

Everyone knows that cute kids and pets help draw a crowd, and enSilo turned to both to help drum up interest in its endpoint security platform. The San Francisco, Calif.-based company had one of its booth attendants propped up on a cute baby costume with a pacifier, while another was being supported by a fluffy brown dog costume.

Caught In A Honey Trap

CrowdStrike put cyber adversaries front and center at its Black Hat booth, offering visitors the choice of an adversary for their own custom T-shirt (the adversaries are hacker groups operating out of places like Russia, China, North Korea and Iran). The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company also had racing legend Mario Andretti on hand for a two-hour meet and greet autograph session.

Livin' On The Edge

In addition to having its booth attendants rock mohawks, Edgewise Networks offered visitors the chance to Zero Trust their wardrobe through T-shirts with sayings things like "don't trust me" and "I Have Zero Trust In Firewalls." The Burlington, Mass.-based company was also raffling off five SNES Classics to help attendees relive their memories of playing games like Starfox and Contra.

Ice Ice Baby

SentinelOne's booth at Black Hat 2018 featured a choreographed dance routine, some breakdancing, and an ice sculpture of the company's logo. But it wasn't just fun and games for the Mountain View, Calif.-based vendor, as the SentinelOne booth featured presentations from industry figures such as Jay Ryerse, Continuum's CTO of security products.

Speed Demons

Checkmarx helped Black Hat 2018 attendees brace themselves for DevOps speed by snapping a photo as a wind machine cranked air at their faces full-bore. The Ramat Gan, Israel-based company intended to have the exercise simulate the risk companies face from software exposure given that businesses are now having to deploy code multiple times a day to keep up with competitors and customer demand.

Art Attack

The CA Veracode booth offered attendees the chance to create custom virtual reality drawings and win hand-painted vinyl illustration from an in-booth artist. The Burlington, Mass.-based entity had Co-Founder and CTO Chris Wysopal speak at the booth, and also hosted a demo by Senior Director of Product Marketing Tim Jarrett on how to secure AWS Lambda Apps within the enterprise scale.

Disc By Disc

Rapid7 encouraged Black Hat 2018 attendees to take a picture with the company's extremely unusual flip-disc wall, featuring plastic discs that physically flip from one colored side to another at a very rapid pace. The Boston-based company also offered visitors to the booth party passes, demo pods, and the ability to chat with threat detection and vulnerability management experts.

Lights Out

Visitors to the Sophos booth went full-bore on the Strike A Light reaction game since a pair of Apple Airpods were up for grabs for the highest overall scorer. The Oxfordshire, England-based company was also giving away its famous socks at the Black Hat booth, as well as hosting talks from Sophos' top security experts on topics ranging from malware to phishing to the SamSam ransomware attacks.

The Writing Is On The Wall

Coalfire Labs offered visitors to its Black Hat 2018 booth a grittier experience complete with sayings such as "App Security" and "*Red Team!" graffitied onto their wall. The Westminster, Co.-based company also hosted a timed lock-picking challenge, with Coalfire offering participants the chance to win $250 in cash each day.

Say Uncle

Sumo Logic leaned into their company name at Black Hat 2018, offering visitors to their company booth Sumo squishies and stickers with the company's name tattooed across the wrestler's chest. The Redwood City, Calif.-based company also hosted a raffle at the booth to win a Protocol Vento drone.

Mirror Mirror On The Wall

Palo Alto Networks had kiosks at its Black Hat booth highlighting key technology areas of focus, and under the display is a mirror on which booth associates could draw diagrams when speaking to customers. The Santa Clara, Calif.-based company was also serving up cups of nitro coffee, and offering attendees the chance to win an electric scooter.

Unicorn Spotting

LogRhtyhm had multiple unicorn piñatas scattered around its Black Hat booth, though neither candy nor a bat were included as part of the package. The Boulder, Colo.-based company also had its product marketing director present on demystifying machine learning and measuring Security Operations Center (SOC) success.

Rock 'Em Sock 'Em

LogicHub offered visitors to its Black Hat 2018 booth the opportunity to blow off some steam with advanced fighting robots, win fun prizes, and gain bragging rights. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company also provided attendees with the opportunity to speak with LogicHub's leading security automation experts.