Black Hat USA: Hoping what happens in Vegas doesn’t actually stay in Vegas…




Security Blanki

Sarah Blankinship

Senior Security Strategist Lead

Vuln wrangling, teams of rivals, global climate change – the hotter the better

Slack jawed gawkers (girls are geeks too!), customers @ risk, egos

This week our team is preparing to travel to Black Hat USA in Las Vegas Nevada, a hotspot (literally and figuratively), and one of the largest gatherings of security professionals in the world. Black Hat brings together diverse security communities to discuss, debate, deploy, and disseminate security information. It is a week of breaking bread with our friends and rivals, learning from others around the world and bridging the roles of researcher and vendor to raise our security awareness.

Within Microsoft, we have a community of security defenders.

Our internal community also discusses, debates, deploys, and disseminates security information. We don’t always agree; our perspectives and backgrounds are as diverse as the world we live in. We strive to understand and mitigate flaws in our own products and platforms, and also responsibly research vulnerabilities in third-party software most commonly used by Windows customers. We focus on many different areas, working on not only improving the security of Windows, but of the entire Windows ecosystem.

For me, security is more than a mindset or an end state, it is a mission. Security is a theme that has the power to unite organizations and individuals across teams across geographic and company boundaries. Within this mission, I, along with our internal community, strive to help ‘secure our planet’ by building bridges and creating opportunities for technical information exchange.

As we look to meeting with our security comrades from around the world in Vegas, we thought it would be interesting to highlight the perspectives and backgrounds of individuals within our internal security community of defenders and present them in short videos to be rolled out over the next week. 

The Microsoft security community folks profiled answered two questions:

How did we become involved in security at Microsoft?

What changes have we seen at Microsoft security over the years?

As our challenges have evolved and become a great deal more complex, our collective communities must also rise to the occasion, evolving our security awareness and response. From our security community to yours, we hope you enjoy learning a little bit more about us as we work to understand more about you all.

And remember, in this digital age, what happens in Vegas doesn’t actually stay in Vegas. 😉

Stay Secure!

P.S.: Check out our new Trustworthy Computing blog aggregator! ( This handy aggregator is a one-stop TwC resource for security and privacy blogging news at Microsoft. Add it to your RSS feeds to stay up to date on security updates, privacy, malware response, security science news and more.

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