3 Reasons I Believe in #CMHSecLunch

Around a year ago, (I know, it is hard to believe it has been a year), I started a quick and informal meet up group in Columbus, called #CMHSecLunch. The idea was simple:

  • Re-Create the “Hallway Con” effect on a monthly basis.

In this scenario, the Hallway Con is the best part of security events. It’s the one where you see old friends, make new ones and have great, warm and personal connections with them. I believe this is the core of why security events and conferences are so valuable. Beyond the skills training, marketing hype and presentations ~ the value of friendship, camaraderie and personal relationships remain.

Thus, I thought, what better way to encourage that part, than organizing events that focus on those goals. And thus, #CMHSecLunch was born. We have been meeting on the second Monday of each month at a rotating mall food court around the city. Response has been great! Sometimes there are a few of us (4 has been the smallest) and sometimes many of us (around 20 have been the largest meetings). But, people have gotten new jobs, found solutions to difficult security problems, met some new friends and saw people they missed.

Overall, it has been fun, entertaining and worthwhile.

We will be continuing the process into 2014 and here are at least three reasons I believe this approach and the #CMHSecLunch events are worth doing:

  1. I have gotten to see people connect, smile and re-unite for a quick bite of food, some laughs and great conversation. Since I am often referred to as the “Hippy Hacker”, you have to know that this alone makes me happy and makes me believe that the events are worthwhile. Whenever we connect with another and share with the community, good things happen! 
  2. New threats have been discussed that brought to light attacker motives, techniques and the width of their activity. If we don’t have lunch and discuss what we are seeing, then the bad guys win. They win even less, if we also have coffee and dessert afterwards. Nuff said! 🙂
  3. New projects have originated from the #CMHSecLunch discussions. In fact, several new projects. People have aligned, worked out some of their ideas and started working together to build talks, mathematical models, risk documents and various other useful tools. When a bunch of smart people eat and play together, often the outcome is stuff that helps all of us. So, being the origin of projects and stuff that helps the community is a fantastic thing. 

Why haven’t you attended (again)? 🙂

If I still haven’t persuaded you to check out the next #CMHSecLunch, (which you can find by clicking here), how about these quotes from people who have attended the event?

@TSGouge: Interaction with real live human beings, no screens involved! Food, jokes (that only another geek would get), getting my butt out of the office chair, and dialogue more rich than any conference or lecture…these are people who will now reach out and collaborate on problems or projects. To sum it all up: connections with people who get it.

@Cahnee: CMHSecLunch is a great way to get away from the craziness of work and spend time with infosec peers to talk about whats on everyones mind. We talk about current events and what each of us see as challenges facing us both professionally and personaly from an infosec perspectice.  Talk about encryption, mobile devices, NSA, DOD, etc.

@gisobiz: CMHSecLunch is a great thing! You meet with the like-minded people, or like-minded people wannabes and enjoy the food (great or not), but most importantly, the awesome conversation. You will get to know better people you already know, or make new friends.  Talking in an informal friendly environment takes the pressure off “being right” or “saying the right thing” which one encounters in a professional environment. Nobody will laugh at you or criticize you; in fact everyone is interested in your fresh (or stale) perspective on InfoSec or current events related to cyber security or anything else you care to share. And the really best thing is you get to learn from your colleagues, something you may not have an opportunity to learn otherwise.  It is like a miniature “geek” party in the best sense of the word. Or if you like – a mini-Black Hat conference. With food.

So, come on out next month and support the community. Have fun, grab a bite and engage with us, we are waiting for the view and insight that ONLY YOU can provide. Join us! 

CMHSecLunch is Monday August 9th

This month’s CMHSecLunch is Monday, August 9th, 2013 at 11:30am. The location for this month is the Easton Mall food court. You can register here, or just show up. ADMISSION IS FREE!!!!!

Imagine hanging out with your infosec bestys, or meeting a new infosec connection that takes your career to the next level. Ever wondered what infosec experts eat, drink or why some of them only wear pastel shirts? This is YOUR chance to find out! 

We hope to see you there! 

Save The Date: August 12 is CMHSecLunch

Just a heads up, mainly because it seems late this month, but the next CMHSecLunch is Monday, August 12, 2013. Location is the North Market, beginning at 11:30am. 

You can find out more here, as well as sign up for reminders and such.

Thanks to all who make it out, we always enjoy seeing you and the amazing conversations that happen there! 

Save The Date: June 10 is CMHSecLunch

Save the date of June 10th for the next CMHSecLunch. This month’s event is at the Polaris Mall food court. It’s 11:30 to 1pm.

As usual, you can sign up here. You can also talk to @cahnee about it on Twitter if you would prefer. She can help you find folks wherever we meet.

The event is FREE, open to anyone interested in IT and InfoSec. You can brown bag it, or get food from the vendors. But, the conversations are amazing. You get to see old friends and make some new ones. Check it out! 

Save the Date for CMHSecLunch – May 13th

It’s almost time for another CMHSecLunch! This month, the event is May 13th, 11:30a – 1pm at Easton Mall food court. As always, it is FREE and open to anyone interested in infosec and IT to attend. You can find out more, track the event and RSVP all one page by clicking here.

We hope to see you there! 

Save the Date: Next CHMSecLunch is April 8th

Just a quick reminder that the next #CMHSecLunch is April 8th, 11:30 – 1 pm Eastern at North Market. (Second Monday of each month with a rotating location..)

Join us for what seems to resemble a “hallway con”, except with better food! Friends, good chats, lots of conversation and camaraderie, all can be found here. Open to all interested folks, admission is FREE – but you buy your own vittles. 😉

See you there! 

Pssst: For those interested, May will be at Easton and June will be at Polaris mall food courts.

We also now have a new Eventbrite page for the event, with a schedule through the end of 2013 – sign up or find out more by clicking here!

CMHSecLunch for February


This month’s CMHSecLunch is February 11th, at the Polaris Mall food court. It starts at 11:30 am Eastern and goes to 1pm Eastern. The Twitter chat runs at the same time if you can’t join in person – use the hashtag #CMHSecLunch to get in on the virtual event.

This is a great opportunity to meet with friends, peers and folks you may not have gotten to hang out with in a while. It is open to the public, there is no cost or registration hassles. You just go to the mall food court for lunch and sit down with friends to talk or maybe even make some new friends.

Turn outs have been great and the group of folks participating is growing. Each month, on the second Monday, we rotate between mall food courts around town so everyone gets a chance to be “close to home”. Seriously, it’s worth coming out. Think of this as the best part of security conferences (the chance to hang out and chat in the hallways), without the con flu or need to travel on an airplane.

Hopefully, the Twitter hashtag will grow as well and we can use it for folks that are/were in our community, but can’t get to the physical event for whatever reason. 

As always, thanks for reading StateOfSecurity and engaging with MicroSolved. We love the CMH infosec community and organizing this event is just another way we hope to give back for all you have done for us over the last two decades! Thanks!!! 

CMHSecLunch is TODAY

Don’t forget, the #CMHSecLunch is TODAY, January 14th, 2013. The time is 11:30 and the location this month is at the Easton Mall food court inside the indoor portion of the mall.

We hope to see you there and bring a friend! No admission, no cost (you can buy food if you want) and open to the public. December had a great turn out and some fantastic conversations!

CMHSecLunch Reminder for December

Just a quick reminder that December’s #CMHSecLunch is Monday, December 10th from 11:30am to 1:00pm at the North Market upstairs near the elevators.

Come by, hang out, see old friends, chat about infosec and tech. Grab some amazing lunch.

See you there. Use the #CMHSecLunch on Twitter and please let folks know about it and to expect you. Open to all and free to attend!