as1x752    12th Nov 2014   

B-Sides DFW

I'm writing this post a bit late here, so please bear with me while I recall my thoughts.

Well, B Sides DFW happened recently and I had just become aware of what B Sides is, so naturally I took interest in it. For the most part, I definitely had some fun and it was quite the learning process as well. I'm sure the majority of the people there new so much more than me, but it was an enjoyable experience, nonetheless.

There were two tracks that had various speakers (Some which I did not attend because I couldn't split myself in two) with a few workshops and some vendors in the front of the building. I was one of the unlucky ones who did not get a chance to register, so there were no freebies available for me, or at least not at the beginning anyway.

So, at the very first track I was rather excited with being back in a college campus environment since the track was in a lecture hall. Having walked in near the end of the talk, I hadn't the slightest of what was even going on, but I sat an absorbed a bit of information anyway.

The next couple of tracks were basic penetration testing, vulnerability assessment, compliance and incident response. The best, and most notable talk was given by Chris Nickerson. Not only did he cover all the bases regarding PT and IR, but he also does this while injecting a very healthy dose of humour in there as well. Even if you find the use of foul language offensive, or see this as lack of professionalism, there is no doubt that you could agree he knows what he is talking about.

After a few of the tracks and a rather disappointing lunch that consisted of lettuce, tomatoes, and BBQ Lays in between two slices of bread (they only had veggie sandwiches left) we decided to explore a little more of what B Sides had to offer.

Lockpick village, for me, was quite a trip to the past since I have some experience with the dark art of lockpicking. A close friend of mine had invested in some Lockpicks back in our High School years and he taught me what each of the tool was called and how to efficiently use them. After discovering that I've amassed quite of bit of rust on my lockpicking technique, I decided it wasn't worth the little bit of energy my lunch replenished anyway, so off we went in search of more fun.

The capture the flag room was dark and, upon peering in, you could hear some sort of techno-ish music blasting and there was a single wall in the back lit up by a projector. I wasn't feeling at all qualified to go in, but I did take a picture of the sign on the door.

At the end of the day, once they finally decided they had more shirts that they actually needed, I was finally awarded my freebies! Stickers and shirts and a bit of knowledge to take home with me. I also learned that there was no Raspberry Pi workshop due to the shippment that they were expecting landing at the wrong location. Glad I didn't bother with that.

Well, that sums up this experience. I do recommend B Sides to anyone who is interested in penetration testing, information security, incident response or anyone seeking to broaden their skillset with a bit of computer knowledge.

As for me, I will see to it that I attend more of these conferences and learn a little more.

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