DC416: Toronto's DEF CON chapter

Written on July 26, 2016

Last month, a bunch of guys decided to form a local DEF CON chapter called DC416. In between BSidesTO and SecTor, I hadn’t really heard of any casual hacker get-together. DC416 fills this gap for me.

I don’t get to go to cons much, mainly because I don’t work in security and I’d have to fund the trips myself. Money and time are an issue, so I’m often content to just watching the talks online once they’re posted. Having a local DEF CON chapter in Toronto where I could learn new things and meet other hackers was exactly what I was looking for. The first meetup was in June where we got to hear about lockpicking, Stuxnet, and polymorphic and metamorphic malware. It was a decent sized crowd and I got to meet some really cool people. IRL, not IRC. I know right?

For the second meetup, I was invited to give a talk, so I put together a presentation on pwning CTF binaries. My slides are here if you’re interested, although I’m not sure how much you’d get out of it without the context. That was yesterday. The crowd turn out was even larger than the first. I’m happy that more people are starting to hear about DC416, and I hope that it becomes popular enough that others step forward to give more great talks.

The organizers are super cool and friendly, and so was the crowd. I generally keep to myself and avoid talking to strangers, but it’s easy to get lost in a conversation when you suddenly have three people you didn’t know minutes ago, chatting with you about exploitation. It was a lively event, people were having a good time in between talks, and some good questions were asked during the presentations. Also, free stickers and prizes.

If you’re in Toronto or the GTA, it’s definitely worth checking out. 3 hours to learn new things, meet other hackers and infosec pros, plus free pizza and beer. I’m excited to see what the next meetup has in store.