The Host Unknown Vegas Party

Host Unknown sole founder Javvad Malik was accompanied by fellow sole founder Thom Langford in Las Vegas for what many affectionately refer to as ‘hacker summer camp’ which consists of three major events, Bsides LV, Blackhat, and DefCon.

We were proud to be a super donor for BSidesLV – and are glad that our credit card company hasn’t sent bailiffs around to confiscate office equipment yet.

But in order to really make it in Vegas, you have to really stand out and do something spectacular. And while other vendors are usually in the business of throwing lavish parties in loud environments filled with liquor. Host Unknown knows that the best party is one where you can have a conversation, and invite only people who work for vendors, or have a corporate card and then thank them publicly for being a generous sponsor.

We must admit, it was probably the best party in town,

“The Host Unknown party was the best party in town” – Javvad Malik

This comment was reiterated by another random person we asked.

“I concur with this gentleman, this was by far the best party in town” – Thom Langford

After all that partying, you’d imagine Host Unknown would be running on empty. But no, these sole founders are deceptively resilient. Jayson Street made a point to find them at DefCon and requested an awkward hug.

Finally, before departing, the gents got a taste of some good old American Freedom!

Stay tuned for more awesome Unknown Parties coming to a security event to you soon. Time and venues are kept secret till last minute to keep numbers down, so prepare for disappointment if you can’t make it, and even more disappointment if you do make it.

Host Unknown, still supports the little people

Host Unknown, the undisputed leader in information-security based videos made by three random men out of London isn’t one to crave the spotlight.

It is why the group that podcasts, sings, acts, and dances, have been maintaining a low profile over the last year.

But that isn’t to say the group has cut down on it’s behind the scenes philanthropic mission.

A few weeks ago, Host Unknown was proud to sponsor BsidesLondon, providing the attendees with a wonderful selection of lanyards.

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One attendee said,

“This is the best lanyard I’ve ever received at a conference. I’m never taking this off, even when I sleep at night. It’s a symbol of quality right there. If I could ever meet Host Unknown, I’d shake their hand.” – Lom Thangford

Not just content with sponsoring one Bsides, the group also made a sizeable lanyard donation to BSidesAthens.

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The sponsorship clearly had an impact as one attendee said, “As soon as I heard Host Unknown had sponsored Bsides Athens, I booked a ticket and flight over. When Host Unknown puts its name to something, you know it’s the seal of approval.” – Mavvad Jalik.

Not wanting to stop at lanyards, Host Unknown is also proudly supporting SteelCon in Sheffield, agreeing to host the wildly popular quiz night.

One attendee said, “We don’t get many nice things up here in Sheffield, not since my dad got laid off from the mill. But when I heard that Host Unknown were coming up and organising the quiz, it was as if all my Christmases had come at once. I’ll be right at the front hoping to catch the eye of the three men who’ve inspired me to remain strong and follow my dreams.” Agny Andreas

Host Unknown Supports The Little People

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Host Unknown Proudly Sponsors BSidesLondon

*Press Release*

2nd June 2016

Host Unknown, the undisputed leader in information-security based videos made by three random men based out of London is unwavering in supporting the community.

The trio who podcast, act, sing, and dance have delighted and educated the information security scene for the past several years.

Sole Founder Javvad Malik was on the original committee that founded BSides London explained the rationale behind sponsoring the event that takes place on the 8th of June 2016 at the ILEC Conference Centre in London.

“I’m so proud of what BSides has achieved over the last few years. From the humble beginnings in 2011, I’ve seen it grow almost as fast as Andy’s waistline. But simply delivering awesome talks and being a beacon of coolness doesn’t pay the way for conferences and we felt it was time to give back in a more direct way.”

Sole Founder Andrew Agnês elaborated further, “We looked at everything that is important to make a conference happen. Venue, speakers, crew, tickets, catering, after-parties – the works. I made the executive decision to support the conference in the most meaningful way possible – and that was to supply lanyards and badge ribbons. The real measure of how successful a conference is.”

Sole Founded Thom Langford added, “When you have piles of money and Panama is no longer a viable investment option, you can get bored very quickly. Even after my great grandfather contracted Delirium Tremens, he continued to support his community. I’d like to think he’s proud of me continuing his legacy today.”

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*About Host Unknown*

Host Unknown is an information security educational / entertainment group from London, England. It was the pioneer and most significant popularisers of Infosec-Rap and is widely considered one of the seminal groups (based in London) in the history of information security. The group has endured controversy owing to their lyrics which many security managers viewed as being disrespectful of their trade, as well as its glorification of certifications and risk management. The group was subsequently banned from many IRC and sub-Reddit channels. In spite of this, the group has amassed 50,000 YouTube views.

Accepting Risks

risksOne could argue that life is all a series of risks. Sometimes we remain in a state of ignorant bliss. Other times, we are aware of risks and take measures to mitigate it. But sometimes we choose to accept the risk.

Accepting risk is not a bad thing. Quite the opposite. Without risk acceptance, there would be no innovation. The reservoir of great ideas would dry up and bankers would have to make do make ends meet with mere six figure bonuses. Risk acceptance is the grown up thing to do. “We understand the risk, and chose to accept it. It’s the cost of doing business.”

But the question is whether some of the risks businesses accept are “unreasonable”. Like creating a toy that captures children’s information. Such as their name, address, birthday, photo, parents details, and allergies – then taking this information and putting it on an insecure website.  We don’t mean a website that is accessible over HTTP minus the S. But a website so insecure that it makes OWASP training websites look ‘military grade secure’ by comparison.

Thankfully though, whenever a company is breached and millions of customer records are exposed – a company can merely shrug and say sorry.  All the time while assuring they ‘take security seriously’.  Customers don’t like it.  Troy Hunt will upload the data to haveibeenpwned.com and the world will grit their teeth and take it.  This is the seedy world of corporate risk acceptance.  The terrifying underbelly of cyber-actuarial tables (if such a thing exists).

The point is that you can’t innovate and deliver new functionality to customers by building a secure website. Or waste precious time ensuring your hardware is hacker-proof. If you do, your competitors will have leapfrogged you.  Not to mention, no customer would want to pay a premium on your offering just because you say it’s more secure than the others.

Or maybe the real question is “how secure do I need it to be?”.

Host Unknown presents: Accepted the Risk (A Risk Management strategy for removing blockers to productivity)

Why waste time remediating when you can simply accept the risk?

@HostUnknownTV bring to life a Risk Manager who gets the balance of risk management very wrong.  Are the CISA auditors being inflexible or did Javvad skip a module on his CRISC?

Love it? Hate it? Leave a comment below!

http://hostunknown.tv

@HostUnknownTV

Produced by Mahmoud El-Azzeh @mantheycallmoo

Directed by Mahmoud El-Azzeh

Director of Photography – Caleb Wissun-Bhide

1st Assistant Cameraman – Iustin Filip-Mucenic

Editor – Lara Blanco

VFX and Colour Grading – Timothy Greenfield

 

Starring

Javvad Malik

Andy Agnês

Thom Langford

 

Dancers provided by Epika Dance http://www.epikadance.com/

Emiko Jane Ishii

Martha

 

Extras

Pauline Singh

Lee Munson

 

An Elazayan Films Production

https://www.facebook.com/Elazayan-Films-284223804977370/