John McAfee Confirmed for Infosecurity Europe

Controversial computer security luminary, John McAfee, will be making a guest appearance at Infosecurity Europe in June, the organizer has announced. He will be speaking at an invite-only, 20th anniversary evening event on June 3 at London’s Olympia, in front of around 1000 attendees.

Among other messages on security, privacy and surveillance, McAfee has indicated that he will be delivering insight on last year’s Sony Pictures hack. He claims that the hackers contacted him directly, giving him insight into their activities and, possibly, identities. 

McAfee is famed for founding the eponymous antivirus company, and perhaps more so for a string of incidents in his personal life which have seen him caught up in a murder investigation, going on-the-run in Central America.

Today, McAfee also posted a short video in response to Infosecurity Europe’s vlog campaign, which invites participants to answer the question: What is the biggest unsolved information security challenge facing us now? Using the hastag #TellInfosecurity, vloggers can tweet @Infosecurity with their videos, which will be played during Infosecurity's 20th anniversary party.

“I believe that the largest unsolved security problem we have today is also the least well-known: it is the problem of mobile devices,” McAfee said in his video. “Our smartphones began as simple telephones, mobile telephones that did nothing more than store contact number and caller number; they have morphed into extremely sophisticated computing devices.”

He continued: “The average Samsung telephone is four times faster and contains five times the memory of a midrange Dell desktop computer. This morphing over time has occurred so rapidly that we have not caught up intellectually; we have not caught up from a software standpoint. The operating systems that manage these mobile devices are primitive at best and have limited or no security clauses within them. I think we are facing a crisis of enormous proportion and very soon I think we will begin to see massive problems because of these devices.”

Kerry Prince, director of Infosecurity Group, explained the announcement: “John McAfee is not only someone who is synonymous with the development of online security but his views remain compelling on current threats, likely future threats and, most importantly, what we as an industry need to do in order to meet those challenges.”

While McAfee’s appearance at Infosecurity Europe is part of an invite-only event, a limited supply of VIP tickets will be available on site to registered attendees.

Infosecurity Europe is held 2-4 June at London’s Olympia

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