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Apple's first official Black Hat talk underwhelms audience

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A talk by Apple's security team manager at the Black Hat security conference was reportedly "ho-hum," with the speaker rehashing an older white paper and leaving without taking questions.

Padlock Macbook
Padlock Macbook

On Thursday, Apple security team manager Dallas De Atley did something no one from his company ever had: officially speak at the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas. Unfortunately, the fact of his appearance was apparently more exciting than the talk itself. CNET reports that De Atley offered only prepared remarks from an earlier white paper on iOS security, leaving the stage without taking questions. Though the talk drew a crowd, attendees called it "ho-hum" and "very, very meh."

The talk marks a major change for Apple, which has previously shied away from discussing security issues: a scheduled 2008 Black Hat talk by other Apple employees was reportedly even canceled by the company's marketing department. Since then, Apple has had to respond to both Mac and iOS malware and exploits, especially as its devices have become more widely adopted by businesses. Unfortunately, it seems that the company is still keeping a tight lid on public statements, something that probably erased some of the goodwill it won by participating at Black Hat.