A dubious cyber security conference

I’ve written before about dubious “academic” journals… and today I’m going to discuss a dubious “academic” conference (which is associated with some dubious journals, but it’s the conference that’s my focus today).

Fordham University has been running the “International Conference on Cyber Security” since 2009 and ICCS 2016 (labelled “Sixth” because they skipped 2011 and 2014) will take place in New York in July. This conference has an extremely reputable program committee and is run by Fordham and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (I expect you’ve heard of them … they investigate cybercrime in the USA…).

There’s also another “International Conference on Cyber Security (ICCS 2016)” running this year as well … it will take place in Zurich in July and is run by WASET (the World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology). The program committee for this one is somewhat less prestigious (I sorry to say that I have not heard of any of them … and to my mind the most reputable looking person is “Wei Yan of Trend Micro” … except he’s currently on his fourth job since he left Trend Micro in 2010, so that makes me wonder how many of the people on the list know that they’re mentioned ?

There’s other reasons for feeling this conference might be a little dubious, not least that this is apparently the “Eighteenth ICCS”. That might lead you to believe that there have been seventeen previous ICCS events … but I did a lot of searches and failed to find any of them !

My searches did turn up the “2nd International Conference on Cyber Security (ICCS) 2016” which will take place at the Rajasthan Technical University, India — this one looks pretty respectable, with PC members from India and the USA.

So if you fancy going to Cyber Security Conference in 2016 then you are spoilt for choice, but I would not myself recommend travelling to Zurich. A key reason is that you may find that the Dorint Airport-Hotel, where ICCS 2016 is to be held may turn out to be a little crowded… the same hotel is hosting no fewer than 160 other International conferences at exactly the same time: click here for the full list!

Alternatively, if you can’t make it this year, put a note in your diary. The “31st International Conference on Cyber Security (ICCS 2029)” is planned to take place in Zurich on July 21–22 2029… Wei Jan is on the PC for that one too … and the submission deadline is as soon as March 31, 2029, so best to get a move on with finishing that paper!

As a final note, invited papers from ICCS 2016 (the Zurich version) are to be published in a special issue of “Advances in Cyber Security”. Now you might cynically think that this was an open access journal from WASEC, but no they have no journal with that title (and in fact neither does anyone else)… but what do you know, “Advances in Cyber Security” is a fine looking book published in December 2012 by none other than Fordham University Press. Small world, isn’t it!

11 thoughts on “A dubious cyber security conference

  1. Maybe the Dorint Airport-Hotel would be a good place for an informal gathering of spam researchers this July?

  2. One can think of a number of reasons why people who want to go to Switzerland (or Europe) for other reasons might wish to say they are going to a conference. I love the way businesses get away with facilitating other people’s naughty behaviour — for example frequent flyer rewards are just blatant bribery for business travellers.

  3. I don’t know that I share your optimism about the conference in Rajasthan, which is sponsored by http://iaasse.org/iaasse-international-association-of-academicians-conferenses (“IAASSE is a young association whose simple but critical goal is to to become a widely accepted assocaition in order to increase awareness amomg its members to discover the best researchers and help to disseminate their research, while its members deliver the next big thing in scholarly communications.” Just assume I included [sic] a lot of times, OK?)

    IAASSE publications include http://www.ijassr.org/ which provides the hopeful note “The papers published in International Journal of advanced studies of Scientific Research (IJASSR) are going to be covered by some world famous indexing and abstracting resources or databases.”

  4. So how does the scam work for these fake conferences? Do they take registration fees up front by credit card?

    I can’t imagine getting that far into the process before I realize it’s fake.

    1. Yes, they collect lots of registration fees, details on their web site.
      My impression is that these are two-way scams, they take every paper submitted, but then the people who write the papers use them to get jobs in places where one six letter acronym looks much like another.

  5. It must be real – the site has photos taken at the conference. Oh wait – except that the conference has not taken place yet. But it must be that conference, because one clearly identifies it as the ICCS 2016.

  6. I could drop by the Dorint Hotel and have a look who is there, if anyone. Not sure the result is interesting, but if you want to further the story, I am happy to take the tram over.

  7. Waset are still going strong. Cambridge even have people attending their conferences, or so it seem. We’ve written about our experience here and list the academic institutions who have people planning to attend.

    I’ll add a link to this site too. Amazing they’re still getting away with this

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