Kebab van – Monaco style.

What do you reckon they sell from the side window of this here caravan? Hot dogs? Ice cream? Kebabs?

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Recognize that brand, some of you?…

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Oh yes. That slick-looking trailer sells Veuve Clicquot – the fancy brand of champagne! Fast food drink – Monaco style!

No, really! Champagne – on tap!

We were in town not long ago and it had been closed for a few days as the weather was so terrible – torrential rain all day and night. But then on our third day when we passed it, that’s when we saw what this caravan ‘did’:

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What a super idea! You stroll along, stop off for a quick flute of the magical bubbly reviver, and onwards you march, fully refreshed and restored! Or is it a dangerous idea? Like the fridge full of the kids’ chocolate and other naughty nibbles? I think it may just be. Thin end of the wedge and all. Good job they only have these shampoo-caravans in wacky Monaco.

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Incidentally, that rain I mentioned. It was more tsunami than mere rain. Monaco, Nice, Cannes and all around suffered catastrophic freak floods, which sadly even claimed lives. The night when the storm hit hardest was one I don’t think I’ll forget: all night it sounded like someone was breaking down the hotel room door, while someone else was knocking wildly on the window with whatever hard objects they could find.

I was in town for Les Assises – the main French annual cybersecurity exhibition-conference. Thousands of invitees, dozens of companies, scores of speeches, lots of discussion, and a few nice lunches and parties. This year for the 15th time.

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A few words on the event by V.L.:

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The exhibition is organized much like a speed-dating gig (from what I’ve heard, naturally:). You check out the list of participants, invite this, that and the other individual for a chat about a specific topic, and those individuals either accept or ignore your invite. Very effective: instead of long presentations – short, sharp sessions for getting straight to the point: the point where one understands whether further cooperation could be beneficial or not.

Not a very French approach. More an American approach, but it does work. And this approach being used at, without a doubt, the main IT security exhibition in France – wow; now that is useful.

It was a little unusual for an IT-Sec event for me in that hardly any of our partners were present. All interaction was vendor-client. I had a job trying to think of which large French companies weren’t there. I had working meetings with folks from [long list of companies known to everyone]. And it wasn’t just sales-marketing guff, either. This was straight, objective discussion of specific issues our tech can help with. 

Topics included: French national certification of security products and services as per the ANSSI system, targeted attacks – both protection against and investigation of, centralization of global purchasing, and raising IT security awareness. Perhaps the hottest topic was SOCs (Security Operations Centers), and on it we had a lot to offer – both useful and exclusive: data feeds, SOC-team training, assisting in incident investigations, and a lot more. 

It seems that even serious specialists understand that, without an element of fun, no IT issues get solved. I quote: “No fun – no getting employees to think up complex passwords!” Just as well, since we had plenty to flaunt on this one: special game-like products to increase employee IT-sec hygiene, KIPS, and CyberSafety Games.

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I’ve nothing more to add. Perfectly summed up, dear V.L.

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