All it took was a pandemic, but the longstanding joke was finally a reality: DEF CON is canceled.
The annual hacker conference in Las Vegas, Nevada typically attracts tens of thousands of attendees to chat, compare notes, and generally cause adorable mischief. One element of this calamity is the constant – and so far false – annual claim that DEF CON is canceled. The corona virus has changed this, and the organization announced on Friday that the personal conference will not take place this year.
“Thanks to # COVID19, the #DEFCONiscanceled meme has gone into real life,” the announcement said. “At the beginning of March we hoped that things would remain stable until August. This is no longer realistic.”
As with many technology giants, the organizers of DEF CON are trying to find out how a remote / digital conference can be held.
“Expect events like a new online mystery challenge, a DEF CON is Canceled music album, distant CTFs like Hack-a-Sat, villages like the Packet Hacking Village, competitions like the TeleChallenge, Ham Exams and more,” said DEF CON founder Jeff Moss aka The Dark Tangent in a blog post. “We’re also planning a movie night away and a drink-up.”
Moss added that he was worried about a second wave of COVID-19 in the fall and that this contributed to his decision to cancel the event rather than simply postponing it.
“”Even if A vaccine should be discovered tomorrow. It would not be early enough to test, manufacture, distribute, and administer it in time for people to travel safely until August, “Moss wrote.” Too many states have stayed open or are reopening, people have been celebrating far too long, and the lack of federal coordination gives me no hope that things will normalize again this year. “
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While DEF CON officially canceled the event this year, the DEF-CON canceled memes will certainly live on.
DEF CON 29 is currently planned for August 2021.