After weeks of preparation and yesterday’s pre-conference ACE and AME certification boot camps, today is officially the opening day of our fifth annual AccessData Users’ Conference. Amidst the glittering lights and clamorous sounds of Las Vegas, in the gorgeous and expansive Aria, a group of intrepid AccessData employees, our industry partners, and roughly 600 of our most engaged clientele – governmental, corporate, legal – have come together to discuss the current and ever-evolving landscape of digital investigations – security, forensics, and discovery.
AccessData’s CEO Tim Leehealey kicked the proceedings off by tearing down any remaining “false sense of security” attendees may have brought with them concerning their network security infrastructures. Most security packages on the market have numerous blind spots, Leehealey warned. And when these systems do “catch” a data breach, they only do so after the fact and fail to offer any remedial capabilities. Demonstrating the passion with which he founded AD, Leehealey updated attendees on AccessData’s determinedly evolving solution to the problem and pledged to continue driving innovation and proactively seeking our present and future threats.
Next, AD trainers presented multiple hands-on labs and lectures for users of various experience levels: from nuts-and-bolts overview sessions on e-discovery workflow best practices to targeted sessions covering topics ranging from malware detection to early case assessment to mobile device forensics. With such an incredible amount of knowledge shared by instructors (and engaged by attendees), it seems, from speaking with attendees and trainers afterwards, that the only issue faced was a reluctance by instructors and attendees to end their sessions on time. Fortunately, all instructors joined the attendees in the exhibit hall for lunch, and the conversations continued.
Today’s three “Lunch and Learn Sessions” covered a fascinating range of topics as well. A distinguished panel of attorneys and service providers followed Leehealey’s opening address with strategies to prevent security breaches in law firms. Meanwhile, Major Keith Miller of the UK, (Officer Commanding, Service Police Crime Bureau, Royal Military Police) presented a lively case study of his real-world application of AccessData’s AD Lab to his agency’s immense workload. And, finally, a panel of attorneys discussed recent updates to the ABA Model Rules and FRCP and the real consequences faced by attorneys who fail to use all of the tools and expertise available to them to address the ESI concerns of their clients. Unfortunately, attendees could only attend one of these concurrent sessions at a time. Hopefully, conversations that began in these panels will continue long after.
The “business” day will conclude with more hands-on labs and meetings around the exhibit hall this afternoon but, perhaps most important, the day will conclude with a welcome reception at the Aria’s exclusive and exciting Haze nightclub. This blogger’s imagination may have some ideas about what will transpire there, as AD and its community engage the “spirits” of Vegas, but I’m not going to share them here . . . what will happen in Vegas, will stay in Vegas.
Stay tuned tomorrow for my round-up of Day Two!