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Welcome to BsidesCPT 2023! As we gear up for an event filled with groundbreaking discussions, cutting-edge technologies, and collaborative learning, we’re excited to unveil “The Rite of Passage” - an extraordinary initiative aimed at nurturing talent and shaping the future of cybersecurity.

The Essence of “The Rite of Passage”

We introduced “The Rite of Passage” initiative to foster innovation and build strong foundations for the cybersecurity community. As part of this visionary program, we plan to sponsor a student volunteer for an immersive experience at the legendary DEF CON 2024 conference in Las Vegas, the holy grail of cybersecurity conferences. This opportunity promises to be a life-changing journey for the chosen individual, elevating their passion for cybersecurity to new heights. DEF CON is more than just another security conference and BSide Las Vegas is more than just the original BSides event. Both these events are so much a part of hacker culture and so steeped in the history of this community that getting to them, to experience them, is very much like a pilgrimage for hackers.

Some insight from past Rite of Passage delegates

Eugene De Beste talks about his trip to vegas for Black Hat & Defcon as part of the Bsides Cape Town rite of passage. 2018 Rite of Passage - Eugene de Beste Bsides Cape Town 2018 - Rite of Passage Talk

Eugene Talk

Choosing the Ideal Volunteer

Selecting the ideal candidate is a task we don’t take lightly. We aim to ensure a fair and transparent process highlighting merit, dedication, and the drive to make a difference. Interested volunteers are invited to submit essays or video presentations to organisers@bsidescapetown.co.za, expressing their commitment to cybersecurity, their dreams, and how they envision contributing to the community. Our select panel of organisers will then meticulously review the submissions, assessing technical knowledge and the applicant’s passion, ethics, and team spirit.

The Enriching Benefits of Attending DEF CON

Immersive Learning Experience: DEF CON is renowned for its hands-on workshops and captivating talks led by cybersecurity experts worldwide. A unique opportunity to absorb knowledge from the best in the field, gaining insights into cutting-edge techniques and emerging threats.

Networking Opportunities: DEF CON attracts cybersecurity professionals, researchers, and enthusiasts from all walks of life. Build invaluable connections, forge relationships and open doors for future collaborations.

Exposure to Diverse Perspectives: The conference hosts a diverse set of speakers and attendees, each bringing their unique experiences and perspectives to the table.

CTF Competitions: DEF CON is famous for its intense CTF competitions, where participants can showcase their technical prowess.

Security Research Showcase: The DEF CON community is at the forefront of security research and vulnerability disclosures, which offers the opportunity to witness groundbreaking research.

A Perspective from a Former ‘Rite of Passage’ Awardee”:

“My name is Michael, aka @shifttymike. In 2017, I was selected to go to BSides Las Vegas and DefCon as part of BSides Cape Town’s “Rite of Passage” initiative. In return, I would need to volunteer at BSides Cape Town and was later inducted as a committee member.

I had been an active member of the Cape Town cybersecurity community for a few years by that time, but the opportunity to go overseas and mingle with hackers from all over the world completely changed my perspective and shone a light on how the ZA community really is such a small, but impactful drop in the bigger puddle.

Fast forward to now and I’m still involved in driving community engagement, now in Gauteng, and I’m working full-time in the cybersecurity field with a passion that was fueled by the opportunity I was given 6 years ago.

Aside from a free trip to Vegas, it’s a genuinely meaningful initiative and, for the right candidate, has the potential to change everything.”


The Rite of Passage is a chance to rub shoulders with industry pioneers, engage in hands-on workshops, and attend riveting talks on the latest threats and innovations - it’s an unparalleled experience. If you would like to support the Rite of Passage, you can do so by donating on Quicket