Well it’s been about two years since I started working with Hackers For Charity for my part it’s been easy. I show up at conventions and sell T-Shirts. I talk about the charity to those that ask, and thank them for their donation. However, the charity as a whole has encountered lots of adversity on the ground in Uganda, but that’s not to say there hasn’t been success. You can find out all about both at the charity website www.hackersforcharity.org.
So what has spawned my first post in over a year. Well as I was driving home from work tonight in DC/Baltimore area traffic which gives you plenty of time to ponder. I was thinking about what the charity needs in my opinion. The charity needs a steady stream of support. That support could be monetary, or that support could be volunteering. I thought about the big Con’s the charity attends to help raise money (Shmoocon, Defcon), but I know there are several more that the charity currently doesn’t attend . I personally don’t have the money for airfare, and the job wouldn’t appreciate the time off. They are a great bunch of folks, but 4 to 6 weeks a year off wouldn’t happen. So first it would be great to find out who is planning events in different areas of the country that would want a Hackers For Charity presence. Then finding people in those areas to go represent the charity at those Cons. This would require table space at the Con, and a few volunteers to work the table during the event.
Then I thought other than helping to sell shirts at various different conventions how do folks volunteer? This has been a thought of mine since I have started helping the charity out. I thought about something that we as a charity haven’t been able to do for various reasons which is support other charities technically outside of the ones Johnny support’s in Uganda.
So this lead me to do a search, and see what I could dig up on charitable organizations being hacked. This is the first blog I found (http://media-ann-such.com/blog/the-charity-website-is-hacked/), and the charity referenced in the article probably isn’t the only one.
There is a need for technical support of charities, but how does the information security community fit in? There are information security companies out there willing to help out charities such as Tenable ( http://www.tenable.com/about-tenable/tenable-in-the-community/tenable-charitable-organization-subscription-program ). So great a charity can get access to a tool that will start them down the path of securing their network. Hmm, well there is one problem. There are probably thousands of folks in the information security community that can run Nessus, but how many charities have some one qualified to run a network audit?
So here we have a couple of problems that require a solution. We need volunteers to help out, and we need a list of charities that need our help. So how can both of them be resolved? That is the crux of the problem so anyone with any ideas feel free to send me an email, tweet or leave a comment.