I attended DEF CON 26 last year, a noob to the community. I submitted three CFP at three different villages. Never in a million years would I have considered being able to go. My DEF CON 26 was what one could call a wild ride with very high highs and very low lows. There was one exception to that and that was meeting a spunky firecracker or shall I say herder of Hackers named headinthebooth.
From the instant we met, I knew that she would play a part in my journey of medical device security. For three years prior to DEF CON 26, I was fighting with my medical device manufacturer to get answers about my own device, alas I felt isolated and alone… Biohacking Village opened my mind to a world that I did not feel isolated or alone. A world where I was a voice of reason and my concerns heard.
I presented my work on how I pwned my own pacemaker. In South African often physicians and other researchers would dispel my research or concerns as something straight from Hollywood. I have heard from many Cardiologist that is it highly impossible and improbable that anyone would want to hack a pacemaker. For me, it was never as much about the fact that the device is hackable. This we have known to be true since Barnaby Jack. All things are breakable and hackable especially if they are built by humans. Let’s face it we are fallible.
Since Biohacking Village my life has changed in that I have found a place for me somewhat out-there views and research. A place where others are as concerned as I am about the future of medicine and interconnectivity. We should be thinking ahead and not dispel these concerns as things from movies. We simply as a society cannot afford one patient to die from a faulty device or hacked device to set back the future of medicine to decades. We need to be aware of the risks and be realistic.