Last night Mick Mowgli, Brighton based portrait street artist who has done work for premiership football clubs and TV companies, got into Amsterdam to paint a mural for us. You can see some of his work below, but check out his Instagram account.
The piece Mick is painting, is a celebration of hackers and code breakers.
Tomorrow, Daniel Cuthbert, well known in the security scene and accomplished documentary photographer, is going to Amsterdam to photograph it.
On Thursday after my talk at Hack in the Box, we are going to run a treasure hunt. Two cryptic clues, the first a clue to a checkpoint and the second to the mural. I reckon the fastest team will be there in less than 30 mins. The first clue will be shared in the hotel bar and the second sent via a DM on our Twitter when people send a selfie of themselves or their team at checkpoint one. The first person or team to take a selfie of themselves next to the mural, will win a very large, professionally produced, framed, signed copy of the work. It will be sent to them in a few weeks, so we can get the production complete.
For a long time I have been disappointed at the mass of cheap, tacky, uncreative, junk swag given out at security conferences. At previously Black Hats I have seen dog petting stations, balls pits and we have all seen the piles of cheap t-shirts and plastic gimmick, discarded in bins along the Vegas strip. And thats even before we talk about the plastic bag problem.
We get why companies do it, it's brand awareness and that's why we are doing it as well, but I think marketing teams can and should be a bit more creative, and better for the planet. If you agree, we hope you share this and hopefully we can set a trend.
Good luck to those at the conference in Amsterdam that are going to do it. I have seen the mockup and its a spectacular piece if you love the history of the security scene.
Note: I am working with Mick to find environmentally better alternatives to the current spray paints.