Download The Lost Policymaker's Guide to Hacker Summer Camp, 2019

About the Lost Policymaker Guide

Download The Lost Policymaker's Guide to Hacker Summer Camp, 2019

The Lost Policymaker is a tongue-in-cheek nod to all the great travel guides that have given aid and comfort to those who seek new experiences in unknown spaces. We hope it will serve you in the same capacity as you travel through a hacker conference or three, whether that’s in the heat of the Las Vegas desert, the friendly confines of Washington D.C., the wild west coast in San Francisco, or elsewhere.

In recent years public policymakers have increasingly frequented hacker and infosec conferences. This guide can serve as a reference and roadmap to help those in the policy field more quickly gain their footing at the events and understand hacker ethos and culture. The four conferences featured in this guide represent some of the top hacker and infosec conferences in the world.

Hacker Summer Camp during COVID-19

COVID-19 has had tremendous negative impacts on public health and society, including Hacker Summer Camp. While going virtual frees conferences of certain constraints (space, geography, shipping, time windows), it imposes others (distance, isolation, network bandwidth). Online events have not yet found a way to evoke the same organic social interactions that physical ones do (if they ever will), so those aspects of events are the most heavily impacted. Unfortunately, BSides Las Vegas decided to cancel its activities, while Black Hat, DEF CON, and many of the Villages are altering their content and format to match a virtual environment.


January 15 - January 17, 2021

ShmooCon (@ShmooCon) is a small, low-key hacker conference in Washington D.C. with a near-cult following and a sense of humor. Its logo is a moose. Learn more about ShmooCon…

Black Hat

August 1-6, 2020

The Black Hat conference features talks about security issues and approaches that impact enterprises and corporations. Learn more about Black Hat…

BSides Las Vegas


BSides Las Vegas is the original in a series of over 100 global annual events, founded in 2009 as an ‘un-conference’ style event as as more laid-back alternative to DEF CON and Black Hat. Learn more about BSides Las Vegas…


August 6-9, 2020

The DEF CON is the premiere global hacker conference. Even after nearly 30 years, DEF CON remains an open space for intellectual exploration, open to all those who want to participate in good faith. Learn more about DEF CON…

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