Reflecting on BSides Canberra 2023: Insights and Highlights from Mercury

This year’s BSides Canberra event drew in about 3,000 attendees across the cyber security industry and community. Vendor booths showcased the latest equipment, the competition hall provided opportunities to try ‘Capture the Flag’ events, and there was a lot of information about careers. The schedule also boasted various talks from industry leaders, many having prepared the material in their spare time.

Our team attended BSides Canberra and found it was a great event where we learned a lot about what’s happening in the industry and how our work fits in. Here are a few key takeaways that we picked up.

Electromagnetic threats: Returning to the new frontier

Electromagnetic threat environments represent one of the most intricate and underexplored frontiers in cyber security. Whilst we’ve historically had a rich body of knowledge in this domain, its absence in recent years has atrophied our skills. As we leverage more technology, the invisible electromagnetic signals around us have become both an asset and a vulnerability. Mercury is excited to be revisiting this domain.

Our ‘Wireless Capture the Flag’ (WCTF) Challenge at BSides Canberra allowed participants to try their hacking skills on WiFi, Bluetooth, and Software Defined Radio (SDR). We facilitated beginners and experts to decode transmissions, breach wireless access points, coerce client devices, and retrieve server files for points.

Fueling the cyber flame: Elevating professional growth

At Mercury, we create subject-matter experts by nurturing talent through continuous training, development and growth. Spaces like BSides Canberra promote this learning. We especially enjoyed the Keynote Session from Louis Nyffenegger about ‘The Journey to Mastery’, which shared practical advice on moving through the learning stages as a cyber security professional.

Together we thrive: Collaboration as the cybersecurity crux

Cyber security is inherently collaborative. At BSides Canberra, the most profound insight we embraced was the essential nature of teamwork within this field. Cyber security is more than securing businesses and data; it’s about collaborating, socialising with colleagues, sharing our wisdom and gaining knowledge from others.

Thank you to @GyledC for sharing their shirt on X! We’re glad you like it and appreciate the message. Read our article Mercury’s Shirt for BSides: An Homage to Florence Violet McKenzie to learn more.

Thank you to the BSides crew and everyone who attended, shared, and made this year’s event successful. We are looking forward to next year already!

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