RSA Tried To Get TrustyCon Booted

from the petty-in-the-extreme dept

Last week was the massive RSA conference, with an estimated 30,000 attendees at San Francisco’s Moscone Center (the big local conference venue). As we had mentioned, to protest the news that the NSA had paid $10 million to RSA to promote a compromised crypto standard, a bunch of security experts canceled their appearance, with many then going on to set up Trustycon, a much smaller conference on technology and security, to be held right across the street from Moscone at the Metreon movie theater. Trustycon announced that it quickly sold out of the 400 tickets available, but apparently RSA decided to try to get them kicked out of their venue.

A report in the NYTimes notes that RSA officials called the Metreon to claim that Trustycon attendees would be involved in protests and that it shouldn’t allow the event to go on:

The organizers of a rival conference, called TrustyCon, which was organized following revelations that RSA had been paid by the N.S.A., said they had spent much of the past weekend persuading executives from the Metreon — another big, downtown center next to the Moscone — not to kick them out of their conference space. The Metreon was set to house the TrustyCon conference on Thursday but Metreon’s management began to grow concerned after they received calls from RSA’s conference organizers.

The RSA organizers warned the Metreon that TrustyCon attendees were arranging a huge boycott on their premises. In the end, the TrustyCon conference was able to proceed Thursday without a hitch.

Talk about extreme pettiness. RSA is the giant in this situation, and despite pretending to address the controversy, it actually did little to deal with the reported claims at all. The least it could have done is been gracious to those who set up TrustyCon. Instead, it apparently chose to be vindictive and petty. It says a lot about the way in which RSA views the world.

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Comments on “RSA Tried To Get TrustyCon Booted”

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ltlw0lf (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Wow, at one point RSA were crypto heroes to me. Phil Zimmerman was an inspiration to my studies. They’ve just burned the last tenuous bit of bridge remaining between us.

Ron Rivest, Adi Shamir, Leonard Adleman and Phil Zimmerman are still crypto heroes. None of them currently have anything to do with the company RSA Security LLC (which is owned by EMC.) Zimmerman never had anything to do with RSA, except having RSA use the government goons to shut down PGP as “munitions” when PGP and RSA got into a little licensing spat.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Petty, but promising

It may have been petty, but if they really didn’t see TrustyCon as a threat, they likely would have ignored them, and trusted their own reputation to ensure that people continued to go to the RSA con, rather than the alternative.

The fact that they instead tried to get TrustyCon kicked out, and in such a pathetic manner though, shows that they do consider them to be a threat, and they’re trying to get them shut down before they’re able to grow.

ltlw0lf (profile) says:

Re: Re:

The RSA Conference is not run or hosted by RSA, the Security Division of EMC. It’s an entirely separate entity, and what you’ve reported is skewed so that you would have something to write about.

Anonymous Coward, get your facts straight before you slam Mike for not getting his facts straight.

RSA Conference IS run by EMC Corporation. While it is true that they use a couple contractors to provide support for the conference, they are very much behind the conference.

Please feel free to visit the website,

edpo says:


RSA have lost their credibility. No matter *what* they do in the future, they can’t be trusted again. We’re not talking about a personal disagreement. They’re professional security products are manipulated and weakened, and it would not be “best practices” to incorporate their products in a corporate environment. My IT has been advised to look elsewhere.

Anonymous Coward says:

Lies, damn lies and TrustyCon

This is the most ridiculous lie about RSAC…anyone who believes Alex Stamos on this is just buying into his self-generated hype to discredit RSAC and bolster his own image. C’mon people, do you really think a conference that attracts 29K people really gives a rat’s butt about a 400-person sideshow in a movie theater? TrustyCon was never a threat to RSAC.

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