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Famed Hacker Barnaby Jack Leaves McAfee to Return To IOActive

Back in June 2011, McAfee proudly announced that it had assembled a team of cyber experts, including Barnaby Jack, the well known white hat hacker, to help combat cybercrime and “think like the cybercriminals” and conduct threat research into areas such as embedded devices.

Just over a year later, Jack said that he would be leaving McAfee and heading back to IOActive, the company where he previously served as Director of Security Testing.

Late Tuesday, Jack announced via Twitter that he has left McAfee and would be going “full circle” back to IOActive.

“Left Intel/MFE, went full circle and will be joining the @IOActive team next week. Absolutely sick crew they've built so I can't wait!” his Tweet said.

Black Hat Attendees Grab Cash From "Jackpotted" ATM

SecurityWeek was able to confirm with IOActive that Jack is making a return to IOActive. "Barnaby Jack will be returning to IOActive on October 8th," Jennifer Steffens, Chief Executive Officer at IOActive, told SecurityWeek Tuesday night.

Jack will join the company as Director of Embedded Device Security, and will be spearheading their research and services division, with a strong focus on developing the tools and programs to drive a new focus on the security of the devices, Steffens said.

Barnaby Jack is probably best known for his ATM hacking demonstrations, which he likes to refer as “Jackpotting”, and has performed at a few conferences, including a demonstration at Black Hat 2010 that got media attention around the world.

Other recent notable moves in the space include Twitter hiring famous “Apple hacker” Charlie Miller. Additionally, SecurityWeek has confirmed that Zynga CSO Nils Puhlmann has left the online gaming company to pursue other opportunities.

Interestingly, Miller quickly responded to Jack’s tweet, comically replying, “@barnaby_jack I can't keep up with your job changes, you're worse than me!”

IOActive is a security research firm that does everything from reverse-engineering smart meters to scanning software code for vulnerabilities.

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For more than 10 years, Mike Lennon has been closely monitoring the threat landscape and analyzing trends in the National Security and enterprise cybersecurity space. In his role at SecurityWeek, he oversees the editorial direction of the publication and is the Director of several leading security industry conferences around the world.