Veteran hacker takes on new role at ICANN

Veteran hacker Jeff Moss – who founded both the DEF CON and Black Hat conferences – has been appointed VP and chief security officer of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

“I can think of no one with a greater understanding of the security threats facing Internet users and how best to defend against them than Jeff Moss,” said ICANN CEO Rod Beckstrom.

“He has the in-depth insider’s knowledge that can only come from fighting in the trenches of the on-going war against cyber threats.”

Indeed, Moss has been a self-proclaimed hacker for over 20 years.

Prior to his work with Black Hat and DEF CON, Moss was a director at the Secure Computing Corporation, where he established the professional services department in Asia, Australia and the United States. Moss also worked in the information system security division of Ernst & Young, LLP.

Unsurprisingly, the ICANN appointment has been widely endorsed by a number of prominent security organizations, including the Internet Systems Consortium, Information Society Alliance and the Center for Technology and National Security Policy (CTNSP).

“Jeff Moss’ selection as ICANN’s Chief Security Officer is an outstanding choice,” explained CTNSP director Linton Wells. 

“Too often, Internet security experts don’t understand the motivations and mindsets of those who pose an online threat to Internet users. Jeff has shown time and again that he not only understands hackers, but that he also truly gets why they do what they do.”

Meanwhile, Moss said he “looked forward” to assuming his new role at ICANN.

“Its role in coordinating the global Internet addressing system means that it is positioned to become the leader in identifying and dealing with online threats to the Domain Name System that could affect two billion global Internet users.”

Moss graduated from Gonzaga University with a BA in Criminal Justice. He currently serves as a member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Advisory Council and is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.