Swimlane Removed from RSAC for not Adhering to Monopoly Rules; RSAC Unavailable for Comment


Swimlane, a leader in security orchestration, automation and response (SOAR), was removed from RSA Conference (RSAC) yesterday after staging a protest to draw attention to some of the biggest issues in cybersecurity: analyst burnout and the cybersecurity talent gap.

RSAC rules state that any marketing or promotional activities must be pre-approved by event officials or outside of a five-mile radius of the Moscone Center, where the convention is held. This covers an area of approximately 35 square miles, nearly monopolizing the 47.35 square miles of San Francisco proper. While RSAC might have started as a way to get people together to innovate, controlling conversations on this level only confirms Swimlane’s belief that the event is more focused on the bottom line than it is on driving change.

Swimlane is one of the only independent SOAR vendors, but were not the largest cybersecurity vendor. We are committed to optimizing the entire cybersecurity space. We pushed the envelope in order to raise awareness for ourselves and for the major roadblocks hindering the security space in general, said Cody Cornell, co-founder and CEO of Swimlane.

Swimlanes staged protest was held on behalf of overworked security analysts everywhere and meant to draw attention to a very real problem. The widening cybersecurity skills gapcaused by a combination of the industry struggling to attract potential talent and burning out existing talentis creating a dangerous situation for enterprises, government agencies and consumers alike.

Our goal was to practice a commonly used form of expression to bring light to the issue. Our goal was never to be disruptive or disrespectful but to be effective and do something with impact, no more no less. Our only infraction was to fail to coordinate with RSAC in advance prior to staging the protest. Even after we were shut down, we have remained respectful and non-disruptive, said Jorge Esguerra, chief financial officer at Swimlane. I think RSAC has wronged us in perhaps an irreparable way. RSAC refused to attend two scheduled meetings to discuss the issue. We were denied due process and their drastic response was not commensurate with the infraction. It was a disproportionate response.

The ever-evolving and growing threat landscape combined with the widening skills gap (3.5 million unfilled jobs by 2021) is creating a dire situation. Bad actors are only getting more sophisticated and breaches are increasing daily. There is a crucial need in the industry to empower analysts and increase the efficacy of security operations centers industry-wide.

RSAC is touted as a place to come if you want to work with the brightest minds to solve the hardest problems in our industry. But being shutout of the event entirely because it wasnt a paid event, is counterintuitive to how we enact real change, said Cornell. By shutting us out of the conference for a totally benign, well-meaning, and satirical protest, RSAC has really shocked folks with their response. We stand behind our messaging and everything for which it stands and believe this would not have happened if we were a premier-level sponsor.

Swimlane will continue its mission on behalf of analysts everywhere. For more information, visit Swimlane.com.

About Swimlane

Swimlane is at the forefront of the growing market of security automation, orchestration and response (SOAR) solutions and was founded to deliver scalable and flexible security solutions to organizations struggling with alert fatigue, vendor proliferation and chronic staffing shortages. Swimlanes solution helps organizations address all security operations (SecOps) needs, including prioritizing alerts, orchestrating tools and automating the remediation of threatsimproving performance across the entire organization. Swimlane is headquartered in Denver, Colorado with operations throughout North America and Europe. For more information, visit www.Swimlane.com.

Melissa Christensen
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