The RSA Report: The Road to RSA

Right now, the Moscone Center is quiet. But in less than a week, the area will be abuzz with activity as San Francisco hosts RSA Conference 2023. Regarded as the preeminent cybersecurity convention, RSAC 2023 is expected to draw an estimated 45,000 attendees, including cybersecurity professionals, IT leaders … and, of course, vendors such as SonicWall.

What SonicWall Has in Store for RSAC 2023

During the conference, key members of SonicWall’s executive team, along with other SonicWall cybersecurity experts, will be on hand for one-on-one meetings and company briefings. There will also be live demos on cloud-managed security and hybrid workforce security, along with presentations on everything from ransomware and zero-day threats to protecting your mobile workforce and the findings of the 2023 SonicWall Cyber Threat Report.

Here’s the full schedule of SonicWall presentations:

Tuesday, April 25
10:30 AM — What is Boundless Cybersecurity?
11:00 AM — On the Frontlines: Defending Against Zero-Day Threats
11:30 AM — Inside the Intel: 2023 SonicWall Cyber Threat Report
12:00 PM — Detect & Stop Ransomware
12:30 PM — Network Security Under One Cloud Manager
1:00 PM — How to Enhance Hybrid Workforce Security
1:30 PM — What is Boundless Cybersecurity?
2:30 PM — On the Frontlines: Defending Against Zero-Day Threats
3:00 PM — Inside the Intel: 2023 SonicWall Cyber Threat Report
3:30 PM — Detect & Stop Ransomware
4:00 PM — Network Security Under One Cloud Manager
4:30 PM — How to Enhance Hybrid Workforce Security
5:00 PM — What is Boundless Cybersecurity?
5:30 PM — Inside the Intel: 2023 SonicWall Cyber Threat Report

Wednesday, April 26
10:30 AM — What is Boundless Cybersecurity?
11:00 AM — On the Frontlines: Defending Against Zero-Day Threats
11:30 AM — Inside the Intel: 2023 SonicWall Cyber Threat Report
12:00 PM — Detect & Stop Ransomware
12:30 PM — Network Security Under One Cloud Manager
1:00 PM — How to Enhance Hybrid Workforce Security
1:30 PM — What is Boundless Cybersecurity?
2:30 PM — On the Frontlines: Defending Against Zero-Day Threats
3:00 PM — Inside the Intel: 2023 SonicWall Cyber Threat Report
3:30 PM — Detect & Stop Ransomware
4:00 PM — Network Security Under One Cloud Manager
4:30 PM — How to Enhance Hybrid Workforce Security
5:00 PM — What is Boundless Cybersecurity?
5:30 PM — Inside the Intel: 2023 SonicWall Cyber Threat Report

Thursday, April 27
10:30 AM — What is Boundless Cybersecurity?
11:30 AM — Inside the Intel: 2023 SonicWall Cyber Threat Report
12:30 PM — Detect & Stop Ransomware
1:30 PM — How to Enhance Hybrid Workforce Security
2:30 PM — Network Security Under One Cloud Manager

Keynotes, Sessions and Other Can’t-Miss Events

But you (probably) won’t be going to RSA just to cruise the expo floor. There will also be more than 30 keynote presentations to choose from, in addition to countless expert-led sessions and training courses. We’ve jam-packed our schedule to bring you recaps of as many of the best ones as possible, offering an overview of the trending topics and compelling commentary that you can experience from anywhere.

Here’s a look at some of the issues taking center stage at RSA 2023:

National Security: Sessions such as “The National Cyber Strategy as Roadmap to a Secure Cyber Future,” “State of the Hack 2023: NSA’s Perspective” and “Cybersecurity Thinking to Reinvent Democracy” will explore the relationship between cybersecurity and governance, with a focus on the global cybercrime capital: The United States.

Ransomware: As we explored in the 2023 SonicWall Cyber Threat Report, ransomware is more dangerous than ever — and sessions such as “Preparing and Defending OT Systems from Ransomware,” “Ransomware: From the Boardroom to the Situation Room” and “Negotiating with Terrorists: The High-Stakes Game of Ransomware Response” examine these devastating attacks from a variety of angles.

Supply Chain: Whether in terms of product shortages or as an attack vector, the global supply chain continues to be a hot topic. “Software Supply Chain: Panel on Threat Intel, Trends, and Mitigation Strategies,” “The World in Crisis: Prepare for Extreme Events via Supply Chain Resilience,” and “Hacking Exposed: Next-Generation Tactics, Techniques and Procedures” will explore how threat actors use trusted supply chains as a back door into businesses, even those that are otherwise well-secured.

AI and Automation:  Over the past year, the potential (and the perils) of AI have come to the fore. In “CatPhish Automation: The Emerging Use of AI in Social Engineering,” “Defending at Machine Speed: Technology’s New Frontier” and “Chat GPT: A New Generation of Dynamic Machine-Based Attacks,” attendees will learn more about what AI is capable of … for better or for worse.

The Future: Without forward-looking strategy, organizations are doomed to be always fighting the last battle. In sessions like “Security in 2023 and Beyond: Automation, Analytics and Architecture” “Combating Evolving Cyber Threats: Leading with Disruption” and “The Next 50 Years with Michio Kaku,” keynote speakers discuss the future of threats, of networks and of the world itself.

With so many things to learn and do, RSAC 2023 promises to be one of the best yet. But if you haven’t already done so, be sure to claim your free expo pass or book your meeting with one of SonicWall’s experts soon: There are only six days left ‘til we see you in San Francisco!

RSA 2023: What “Stronger Together” Means With SonicWall

In less than a month, members of the cybersecurity community will travel to San Francisco for RSA Conference 2023, and for the first time since 2020, SonicWall will be joining them.

Starting on Monday, April 24, you can visit us at booth #5585 in the North Hall of the Moscone Center for previews of upcoming SonicWall innovations, one-on-one meetings, demos of our latest technology and more.

This return to RSA comes at an opportune time: the RSA 2023 theme, “Stronger Together,” isn’t just an ideal that SonicWall believes in — it’s the very foundation that SonicWall was built on.

Today, SonicWall collaborates with the cybersecurity community on threat mitigation strategies and ways to pursue shared cybersecurity goals across networks, endpoints, cloud environments and more. SonicWall also compiles and shares a wealth of threat intelligence to build trust and cooperation within the wider intelligence community and create a safer future for all.

The Power of Partnership

But this sort of cooperation comes naturally to SonicWall: as a 100% channel-driven company, cooperation with our global partner network has been vital to SonicWall’s entire business model from the beginning.

“At SonicWall, we understand that our partners are critical to our success, and we work hard to ensure that they have the tools and support they need to be successful,” said SonicWall CRO Jason Carter in a statement announcing SonicWall’s seventh-straight 5-star rating in the CRN Partner Program Guide. “By providing innovative, cost-effective security solutions and exceptional customer service, we help our partners deliver superior cybersecurity services to their customers and build lasting relationships.”

And in recognition that SonicWall and its partners truly are “Stronger Together,” SonicWall recently announced several initiatives to help further strengthen relationships with partners and help contribute to their success. Shortly after assuming the role of SonicWall president and CEO, Bob VanKirk announced one of his primary focuses would be staying better aligned with partners.

“From our early days, SonicWall’s accomplishments have always been linked to the success of its esteemed partners and distributors,” VanKirk said. “We’ve always strived to be a partner-centric company, but we want to continue to grow in how we can better support and enable our partners across every function and team.”

The Future is Partner-Focused

Some of these planned changes will take the form of improved partner offerings. Other changes have taken the form of an expanded executive lineup. To help lead SonicWall in its next phase of growth, three new executives were appointed in early 2023:

Peter Burke, Vice President and Chief Product Officer — Burke is a highly accomplished business leader, with a Ph.D. in Computer Science (Artificial Intelligence) and over 25 years of combined technology experience with Silicon Valley startups and multinational corporations. Burke’s prior engagements include SVP of Research and Development at Ping Identity and EVP of Engineering and Operations at Neustar. In addition, Burke held executive management positions at InQuira (acquired by Oracle) and Ceon (acquired by Convergys). His reputation as a visionary technologist with extensive experience in cloud-based enterprise software development makes him a perfect fit for his new role as the primary driver of product development and execution at SonicWall.

Jason Carter, Chief Revenue Officer — Over the past 17 years, Carter has specialized in sales leadership, sales operations and customer lifecycle management within the global channel IT industry. Recently recognized by CRN on the Channel Chiefs list, Carter has worked as part of the SonicWall SecureFirst partner program, focusing on channel partner dynamics and enabling SonicWall partners to manage and grow recurring revenue. Since joining SonicWall in 2011, Carter has developed, implemented and managed global sales programs centered on both customer experience and partner development. Carter’s strategic focus helps increase customer retention, decrease attrition and drive incremental services revenues with holistic partner programs.

Chandrodaya Prasad, Executive Vice President of Global Product Management — Prasad has over 20 years of cybersecurity product management and marketing experience. Most recently, he served as vice president of product management at Cisco, overseeing teams delivering SASE, cloud and network security. Prasad joined the SonicWall leadership team to help position the existing portfolio for success, grow cloud initiatives and expand SonicWall’s product offerings.

In announcing the appointment of the new executive team members, SonicWall CEO and President Bob VanKirk said, “An unwavering commitment to SonicWall customers and partners around the globe is SonicWall’s priority. These executive appointments are yet another sign that SonicWall is continuing to evolve to remain one of the leaders in the cybersecurity space. Along with the emphasis on SonicWall’s outside-in approach, we are positioned to take our global partner community to new heights in 2023.”

RSA Conference 2023 will be a great opportunity for partners and customers alike to meet members of our executive team. Along with many of SonicWall’s preeminent experts in threat detection, product marketing and more, these leaders will be available for one-on-one meetings starting Monday, April 24 — but spots are limited, so book yours today.

We look forward to seeing you at RSA 2023!

The Shortest Line at RSA Conference 2018: Where are all the Women?

Anyone who has attended an RSA Conference knows that it is typically a male-dominated event. In keeping with this year’s theme, “Now Matters,” I decided that this was the year for me to take a step toward shifting that gender imbalance.

I reached out to my leadership team to request that I attend RSA Conference 2018 as a part of the SonicWall team. My motivations were clear: as a woman working in cyber security, I believe more women need to be represented at the RSA Conference (and every other information security event).

In early March, the organizers behind RSA Conference 2018 announced their preliminary lineup of keynote speakers to much backlash and outcry in the industry. Critics and concerned industry experts were quick to highlight that the lineup was stacked with 19 men out of a total of 20 speakers. The sole female speaker: Monica Lewinsky. Lewinsky, although undoubtedly an interesting and relevant keynote on the topic of anti-cyber-bullying, is not exactly a name synonymous with cyber security.

RSA’s position
To their credit, RSA Conference organizers were quick to clarify that the list was not yet complete. The initial list only included speakers that had been confirmed early, many of whom were connected to the conference through sponsorship deals. In a matter of days, the RSAC organizers clarified that the conference would “feature more than 130 female speakers tackling everything from data integrity to hybrid clouds to application security, among other topics.”

In a statement that seemed to shift the blame back to the industry, RSA highlighted that 20 percent of overall speakers at the event were women, even though Forrester estimates that 11 percent of cyber security positions are held by women.

Observations at RSA Conference
As a member of SonicWall’s booth team, I spent the majority of my time at the conference on the expo floor where, interestingly, there seemed to be a decent representation of both men and women. On closer examination, the majority of women present were wearing exhibitor badges, indicative of women gravitating toward marketing or sales roles in the technology industry. Though, admittedly, this is anecdotal evidence.

Over at Moscone West, where the keynote speeches and sessions required a full conference pass costing $2,000-plus per attendee, it was a different story. A SonicWall colleague who attended the first morning’s keynote sessions jokingly shared with me that it was the first time he had experienced longer waits for the male restrooms while the female restrooms were relative ghost towns.

Organizers even made changes to the restroom configuration: In the North Expo hall, the women’s restrooms were converted to be gender-neutral in order to facilitate demand.

Lines for the Men’s Restrooms at RSA Conference 2018. Photo Credit: Samantha Schwartz

A history of change

It wasn’t all negative news for female representation at the RSA Conference. The organizers at RSA have been adapting to the changing industry landscape long before this year’s criticism. As recently as five years ago, it was common to see technology vendors at trade shows advertising their products with the assistance of “booth babes.”

It wasn’t until 2015 that RSA, under industry pressure largely driven by social media, issued a ban on so-called “booth babes.” Exhibitors are contractually obliged to have all expo staff adhere to a dress code described as “business and/or business casual attire.” This move has forced marketers to find creative and unique ideas to garner booth traffic — everything from magicians to virtual reality experiences were on display at this year’s expo.

Women in cyber security
This year’s conference also featured several panels and discussions dedicated to the topic of women in the industry. An unexpectedly optimistic discussion, “Women in Computing: Why Are Women Leaving Computing Professions?,” provided valuable insights to help leaders address female turnover in the industry.

Caroline Wong led a panel discussion on “Women in Security: A Progressive Movement,” which focused on the value that a woman’s perspective can bring to the table along with actionable takeaways for addressing problems with hiring practices.

Diversity is everyone’s responsibility

While tech conference organizers certainly have a responsibility to ensure the conversation around gender disparity has a forum and that women are represented fairly, opportunities to accelerate the progress in this area lie within companies, leadership and individual employees at all levels.

The Frost & Sullivan report, “The 2017 Global Information Security Workforce Study: Women in Cybersecurity,” published some telling statistics about this effort. Although just 11 percent of information security professionals globally are women according to the report, women in the field are more likely (52 percent) than their male coworkers (46 percent) to hold a master’s degree or higher. Despite this, they still hold less workplace authority.

Many organizations say they want to hire more women, yet most companies, especially in male-dominated fields of technology and cyber security, are far from reaching hiring parity. In North America, for example, women represent 14 percent of the cyber security workforce — the highest percentage when compared to other regions like Asia-Pacific (10 percent), Africa (9 percent), Latin America (8 percent), Europe (7 percent) and the Middle East (5 percent). For context, in the United States alone, females make up 48 percent of the workforce, said the report.

Organizations need to increase their investment in women. Beyond the obvious opportunities — closing pay gaps and advancing women in top leadership — organizations need to make workplaces trusted spaces, implement unconscious bias education and share best practices.

If you are a woman involved in the tech industry, you have an opportunity to serve as a much-needed role model — both to other women and to your male colleagues, many of whom are eager to hear and understand the female perspective in this industry. In short, if you are a woman in tech … get out there, be seen and be heard.

Resources for Women in Cyber Security

WiCyS Women in CyberSecurity
Women in Security and Privacy
National Center for Women & Information Technology
SWE – Society of Women Engineers
Conferences and Events
WiCyS Women in CyberSecurity
Grace Hopper Celebration
OURSA – Our Security Advocates
Raytheon’s Women Cyber Security Scholarship Program
(ISC)² Women’s CyberSecurity Scholarships
Scholarship for Women Studying Information Security

SonicWall is proud to be an equal-opportunity employer. We are committed to providing employees with a work environment free of discrimination and harassment and welcome the opportunity to support skilled, talented women and men in their cyber security careers. If you are interested in pursuing a career at SonicWall, please explore our careers page:

RSA Conference 2018: SonicWall is Hot

Fresh off of April’s massive SonicWall Capture Cloud Platform launch, SonicWall has been featured in a pair of CRN articles highlighting the hottest products at RSA Conference 2018.

The SonicWall Capture Cloud Platform is lauded in CRN’s “10 Hot New Cloud Security Products Announced at RSA 2018” listing. CRN recaps the platform’s ability to integrate security, management, analytics and real-time threat intelligence across SonicWall’s portfolio of network, email, mobile and cloud security products.

Complementing that accolade, a pair of new SonicWall products were listed in the “20 Hot New Security Products Announced at RSA 2018” category. The new SonicWall NSv virtual firewall (slide 7) and SonicWall Capture Client (slide 12) endpoint protection were showcased.

SonicWall Capture Client is a unified endpoint offering with multiple protection capabilities. With a next-generation malware protection engine powered by SentinelOne, Capture Client delivers advanced threat protection techniques, such as machine learning and system rollback.

SonicWall Network Security virtual (NSv) firewalls protect all critical components of your private/public cloud environment from resource misuse attacks, cross virtual machine attacks, side channel attacks and common network-based exploits and threats. It captures traffic between virtual machines (VM) and networks for automated breach prevention and establishes access control measures for data confidentiality and ensures VMs safety and integrity.