Conferences allow you to hear a concentrated number of talks, on a variety of contemporary security topics, over multiple days. They vary in size and cost. Nationally and globally, there are hundreds of security conferences every year. The following might be of particular interest to you (most of these have been attended by WPI students):

  • CHES, the annual conference on Cryptographic Hardware and Embedded Systems, is organized by the International Association for Cryptologic Research. It focuses on the implementation of cryptographic algorithm. Random number generators, special-purpose cryptanalytical machines, and related topics are often covered. Roughly 400 people attend from countries around the world. The student registration fee is $375; you can apply for a grant to cover the costs of registration, travel, and lodging. The next CHES will be in Prague on September 10-14, 2023. (
  • Day of Shecurity is a free conference designed to help women enter the field of cybersecurity. Workshops range from technical information and hands-on training to networking and career advice. The most recent Day of Shecurity was on May 11, 2022. (
  • DEFCON is held in Las Vegas in August. It is one of the oldest and largest hacker conventions, offering speakers, panels, competitions, vendors, and much more. Over 20,000 people attend each year. The next DEFCON will be held on August 10-13, 2023. Student registration is roughly $300. (
  • Grace Hopper Celebration is an annual conference focused on women in technology. There are session tracks on privacy/security, AI, Data Science, software engineering, Virtual Reality, and more. The student registration fee is about $450. The next GHC will be September 26-29, 2023 in a location not yet announced. (
  • Hackers on Planet Earth (HOPE) is held every two years in New York City. It’s a creative and diverse hacker event that includes speakers, workshops, competitions, films, lock picking, vendors and more. It’s designed to be a supportive learning environment where you can get hands-on experience with different hardware and software tools. Students can attend for about $180. The most recent HOPE was held on July 22-24, 2022 in Queens. (
  • New England Security Day (NESD) is held annually at a regional university. Recent hosts have included WPI, UMass Amherst, and Northeastern. The most recent NESD was held in September 2022. If you’re involved in security research with a faculty member, you may be able to present a talk or poster together at this conference. For more information about the next NESD, email Professor Craig Shue or Professor Robert Walls.
  • New England Hardware Security Day is also held annually in our region with a focus on hardware security. The next NESD will be on April 7, 2023 at Northeastern University in Boston. (
  • Women in Cybersecurity (WiCyS) is held each year in a different U.S. city. Any security student, male or female, can attend as long as they’re a member of WiCyS, which is a national nonprofit organization. The annual student membership fee is $20. This conference covers current security issues in industry as well as career advice and connections to job opportunities. The most recent WiCyS conference was in Denver, CO in March 2023. Student members apply directly to WiCyS for a conference slot and a scholarship that covers meals and lodging. (