Why Host Unknown is the saviour of the information security industry

It’s 2014, yet the majority of companies still market and deliver information security communications like its 2001.

Host Unknown wasn’t founded on the basis of the charisma of our hosts:


And it certainly wasn’t because of their good looks:

Host Unknown 054

It’s because we at Host Unknown believe there’s a critical gap in the security industry when it comes to how corporates approach this issue. More often than not the content is dry, boring and sanitised to within an inch of it’s life by over-cautious HR, legal departments or corporate comms.

In other words, security content looks like google, circa 1998, and that isn’t a good look for the 21st century.


These are the very same HR, Legal and corporate communications departments that spend tens of thousands employing scantily clad women to hand out USB drives in order to scan badges at conferences. Or hand out free alcohol at events. Or have giant billboards put up in a city… even take out TV ads. Honestly, when was the last time you (or anyone you knew) didn’t fast forward through a TV commercial, stopped to look at a billboard in the street, or made a big security investment because a nice girl handed you a USB stick? (Andy, don’t answer that last question.)

We want to rock the boat (just a little) because we’re passionate about the way the security industry is relegated to the status of a neutered mongrel. We do it because telling users about security can’t be done by killing them with PowerPoint. It’s done by telling them stories. To tell someone a story you need to grab their attention – and that attention is shifting FAST meaning their time and attention are valuable commodities.

The days of business to business (B2B) or business to customer (B2C) communication channels are over, it’s all about P2P (person to person), and when you deal with people everyone has their own preferences, likes and dislikes. We don’t expect everyone to agree with our methods or our storytelling techniques. But what we absolutely believe in, is that companies need to learn how to tell their stories in the most effective way.

And that means ditching the ancient constraints of walking on egg shells because you’re afraid to offend; your end product may not offend anyone, but it also will certainly not inspire anyone.

What do you think?

Host Unknown Caption Competition; and the winner is…

Last week we announced an impromptu caption for a picture taken of our three presenters during one of their planning sessions. We were inundated with entries, and not surprising since the prize is an exclusive Host Unknown gift!

And now to announce our winner. Our heartiest congratulations go to @InfosecGeekLady, with the following:

HU Caption Winner

We will be sending your prize out very soon @InfosecGeekLady, we hope you like it!

Here is a selection of the very best of the other captions submitted, and thank you to everybody who took part and kept the boys feeling loved.

submitted by @GeekChickUK

“and you think we know what we’re talking about? Hehehe”

submitted by @atarii

“and then he said it must be in the flash controller… he still doesn’t realise it was just me with an infected floppy disk!”

submitted by @NodeZero_Linux

“and then he said CISSP is useful”

submitted by @wimremes

“Did you say PCI 3.0?!?”

submitted by @k3r3n3

“no one is reading your emails. we were only looking at metadata”

“sure we pay bug bounty fees – with a McDonald’s gift card!”

submitted by @infosecmo

“so a cyber, APT and cloud walk in to a bar…<redacted>…”

submitted by @krypt3ia

“and the ‘Most Creative manscaping’ award goes to…”

submitted by @_hoolers

“@ThomLangford & @sirjester get to see @J4vv4D’s new infosec rockstar moped”

Hoolers Scooter