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The OWASP Northern VA Local Chapter meetings are FREE and OPEN to anyone interested in learning more about application security. We encourage individuals to provide knowledge transfer via hands-on training and presentations of specific OWASP projects and research topics and sharing SDLC knowledge. OWASP Northern Virginia has almost 1000 members with a wide range of experience and backgrounds. We are also one of the two hosts with OWASP DC, hosting the 2016 OWASP AppSec USA Conference in Washington, DC. We'll be looking for members to help volunteer during the next few months.

We the encourage vendor-agnostic presentations to utilize the OWASP Powerpoint template when applicable and individual volunteerism to enable perpetual growth. As a 501(3)c non-profit association donations of meeting space or refreshments sponsorship is encouraged, simply contact the local chapter leaders listed on this page to discuss. Prior to participating with OWASP please review the Chapter Rules.

The chapter is committed to providing an engaging experience for a variety of audience types ranging from local students and those beginning in app-sec, to those experienced and accomplished professionals who are looking for competent collaborators for OWASP-related projects. To this end, we will continue to conduct both monthly chapter meetings as well as out-of-band curricula, on application security topics.

OWASP Northern Virginia

Welcome to the Northern Virginia chapter homepage. Come see us at a chapter meeting, jump on our Google Group, or email any of us directly.

Chapter Board

Previously having had a Chapter Leader, then a Chapter "Program Committee", the chapter is now run by a full board:

  • Abdullah Munawar - Board Chair
  • Michael McCabe
  • Patrick Cooley
  • Akshay Sivananda
  • Sean Poris
  • Ben Pick

Board member responsibilities include:

   * Providing governance for chapter and member activities in terms chapter mission and OWASP code of ethics
   * Recruiting OWASP membership
   * Driving OWASP NoVA Chapter attendance and involvement
   * Deferring to, facilitating, and supporting the activities and projects of chapter membership
   * Eliciting, scheduling, and coordinating chapter panels, speakers, and other sessions
   * Scouting, clearing, and scheduling chapter meeting venues and catering
   * Identifying opportunities for collaboration between chapter membership, OWASP global committees, and other organizations
   * Collecting and auditing use of chapter funds
   * Voting on chapter matters

For more information on how the board was elected and what it's responsibilities are, please see: Chapter Board Election


OWASP Foundation (Overview Slides) is a professional association of global members and is open to anyone interested in learning more about software security. Local chapters are run independently and guided by the Chapter_Leader_Handbook. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit professional association your support and sponsorship of any meeting venue and/or refreshments is tax-deductible. Financial contributions should only be made online using the authorized online chapter donation button. To be a SPEAKER at ANY OWASP Chapter in the world simply review the speaker agreement and then contact the local chapter leader with details of what OWASP PROJECT, independent research or related software security topic you would like to present on.


Btn donate SM.gif to this chapter or become a local chapter supporter. Or consider the value of Individual, Corporate, or Academic Supporter membership. Ready to become a member? Join Now BlueIcon.JPG

You may also want to follow @OWASPNoVA on Twitter.

2015 Chapter Election Candidates

  • Mike McCabe - Board Chair
    • OWASP Membership ID: 020000901
    • Endorsement - Jack Mannino, Current Board Chair
    • Full Disclosure: Mike reports directly to me at our day job.
    • Mike is one of the most ethical, hard working, and analytical people I've had the pleasure to meet. In his previous two years serving on the OWASP NoVa board, Mike has been instrumental in keeping a healthy pipeline of interesting speakers as well as helping carve out new initiatives based on chapter feedback. I fully vouch for both his character and his ability to run the chapter in an ethical, high quality manner.
  • Akshay Sivananda
    • OWASP Membership ID: 020000050
    • Endorsement - Ping Ning, Chapter Member
    • Akshay is a seasoned information security professional, with broad experience in secure SDLC, vulnerability management, and software security initiative. I worked with Akshay before and enjoyed working with him. He was very supportive and always ready to provide a helping hand. He always has an open mind and respects various opinions. I think Akshay is a great candidate for the Owasp NoVA board and believe he will make significant contribution to the chapter. As a regular member of Owasp, I wholeheartedly endorse Akshay for the Owasp NoVA chapter board.
  • Abdullah Munawar
    • OWASP Membership ID: 020000037
    • Endorsement - Jon Callahan, Chapter Member
    • I worked with Abdullah for about a year and can personally attest to not only his knowledge but also his passion and drive to further himself in the security field. When committing to something, you'll know he will follow through and because of this, was my goto guy until we parted ways. Add on the 8 years worth of involvement with OWASP and you get someone who understands exactly how this chapter works and is willing to put the time in to keep it as great as it's been.


Meetings are (generally) held the first Thursday of the month.

Note: We need speakers and topics! If you want to present, please contact Mike or Abdullah. We're very open to hearing from all our members.

Next Meeting

We'll post all meetings on the Meetup page below.

We can also be contacted through the comment or messages systems on Meetup.

For latest news check the meetup page here: Meetup.

Past meetings

September 2014

Date/Time: September 4th, 2014 @ 6:30pm

Location: LivingSocial, 11600 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston, VA

Registration: Meetup

AGENDA: We will cover some chapter business then go straight into a session covering Ruby on Rails Security.

Presentation Title: The World of Ruby on Rails Security

Abstract: Take a quick trip through the world of Ruby on Rails security! The journey will start with an overview of security features offered by the popular web framework, then detour through dangerous pitfalls and unsafe defaults, and finally end with suggestions for improving security in Rails apps and integrating improvements into the development process.

Speaker Bio: Justin Collins is a member of the application security team at Twitter and the primary author of Brakeman, a static analysis security tool for Ruby on Rails.

July 2014

Date/Time: July 10th, 2014 @ 6:30pm

Location: LivingSocial, 11600 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston, VA

Registration: Meetup

AGENDA: We will have a technical presentation on OAuth, and we will have an open forum on some upcoming changes to the chapter's format that we want feedback on before we move ahead with them. Our goal is to make OWASP NoVa a group that not only spreads education, but produces material for the broader application security community. Please join us and have your say in the way OWASP NoVa runs in the future!

Presentation Title: OAuth 1.0 Authorization and Security

Abstract: OAuth 1.0 is an authorization standard based on the idea of a “valet key”. This presentation will provide an overview of the OAuth 1.0 authorization model, how it may fit in the enterprise environment, and some security implications for designers and security analyzers. OAuth 2.0 framework, the proposed standard to replace OAuth 1.0, will also be briefly discussed.

Speaker Bio: Ping Ning is a senior consultant at Cigital with 20 years of development and security experiences. He is practicing many software security services for clients, including architecture risk analysis, security architecture and design, secure code review, penetration testing, building security programs, and tools deployment and training.

February 2013

Date/Time: February 7th, 2013 @ 6:30pm

Location: LivingSocial, 11600 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston, VA

Registration: Meetup


* News / Updates
* Talk: Jeffrey Walton - "Securing Wireless Channels in the Mobile Space", Presentation Slides
* Firetalks!

Presentation Title: Securing Wireless Channels in the Mobile Space

Abstract: Secure channels are a cornerstone to individuals and employees on the go. The mobile environment adds additional pressures to securely delivering content to users - irregardless of whether its an email service delivering personal messages to a user, an organization providing company secrets to a mobile workforce, or a content provider streaming protected media to a subscriber. This talk will discuss the mobile environment, challenges to securely delivering content, examine past failures, offer remediation for issues in the environment, provide sample code for Android, iOS, .Net, OpenSSL, and discuss initiatives to address known issues.

Speaker Bio: Jeff has nearly 15 years of experience in a variety of roles including Systems Engineer, System Administrator, Developer, Security Engineer and Security Architect. He has worked with a number of Federal agencies and private institutions, including the Treasury Department, Social Security Administration, State Department, Diplomatic Security Service, financial institutions, and defense contractors. He has designed mobile solutions; developed secure containers; implemented secure channels; integrated management functions such as password lockouts and remote wipes; performed code reviews; and integrated security libraries such as Microsoft CAPI, Certicom Security Builder, OpenSSL and Crypto++. Jeff has also overseen and performed certification and accreditation audits, secure code reviews, and architectural risk assessments on traditional and mobile systems of varying code base sizes (primarily Objective C, C/C++ with Java, .Net).

Downloads: Presentation Slides, Supplement with code excerpts, Android sample program, iOS sample program, .Net sample program, OpenSSL sample program

January 2013

Date/Time: January 10th, 2013 @ 6:30pm

Location: LivingSocial, 11600 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston, VA

Registration: Eventbrite


* News / Updates
* Upcoming chapter elections and 2013 plans
* Talk: "Automating (Some) Android Security Testing"
* Firetalks!

Presentation Title: Automating (Some) Android Security Testing

Abstract: Dynamically assessing an Android application for security issues requires examining many different layers. Some areas are extremely feasible to automate, while some areas may lend themselves better to manual analysis or semi-automated analysis. This presentation will present a more semi-automated approach to assessing applications rather than 'fire and forget' testing. We'll also look at some of the prerequisites for performing Android testing as well as some of the essentials for things you'll want in your testing environment (such as coffee and Red Bull).

Speaker Bio: Jack Mannino

October 2012

Date/Time: October 4th, 2012 @ 6:30pm

Location: LivingSocial, 11600 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston, VA

Registration: Eventbrite


* News / Updates
* Talk: Dan Cornell - "Benchmarking Web Application Scanners for YOUR Organization", Presentation Slides
* Firetalks!

Presentation Title: Benchmarking Web Application Scanners for YOUR Organization

Abstract: Web applications pose significant risks for organizations. The selection of an appropriate scanning product or service can be challenging because every organization develops their web applications differently and decisions made by developers can cause wide swings in the value of different scanning technologies. To make a solid, informed decision, organizations need to create development team- and organization-specific benchmarks for the effectiveness of potential scanning technologies. This involves creating a comprehensive model of false positives, false negatives and other factors prior to mandating analysis technologies and making decisions about application risk management. This presentation provides a model for evaluating application analysis technologies, introduces an open source tool for benchmarking and comparing tool effectiveness, and outlines a process for making organization-specific decisions about analysis technology selection.

Speaker Bio: Dan Cornell has over 15 years experience architecting and developing web-based software systems. As CTO, he leads Denim Group's security research team in investigating the application of secure coding and development techniques to improve web-based software development methodologies. He also heads the Denim Group security research team, investigating the application of secure coding and development techniques to the improvement of web-based software development methodologies. Dan currently serves as the OWASP San Antonio chapter leader, member of the OWASP Global Membership Committee and co-lead of the OWASP Open Review Project. Dan has spoken at numerous security conferences, such as RSA in San Francisco, OWASP EU Research in Athens and OWASP AppSec USA in Minneapolis.

July 2012

Date/Time: July 12th, 2012 @ 6:30pm

Location Sponsor: LivingSocial, 11600 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston, VA


* News / Updates
* Talk: John Steven - "Password Storage Security"
* Firetalks!

Presentation Title: "Password Storage Security" Password Storage Security.pdf

Abstract: During the June meeting we discussed the LinkedIn password theft which was just beginning its the news cycle. We'll use the July chapter meeting to discuss issues around password hashing and a solution. While wholly different schemes for protecting passwords at rest are preferable, it's instructive to look at hashing passwords as a threat modeling exercise and take the time to follow through to a fix.

To read up on the issue, look at my latest blog post on the topic: League Blog - Securing Password Storage

For those who were sufficiently intrigued, mystified, or inspired by the presentation on password protection at the last chapter meeting, Coursera is offering a free 6-week Stanford course on cryptography that begins on August 27th ("Learn about the inner workings of cryptographic primitives and how to apply this knowledge in real-world applications!"): Course

Speaker Bio:

See John Steven Bio

June 2012

Date/Time: June 7th, 2012 @ 6:30pm

Location Sponsor: LivingSocial, 11600 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston, VA


* News / Updates
* Talk: Ken Johnson (LivingSocial) - "AppSec, Ritalin, and Failing Fast"
* Firetalks!

Presentation Title: "AppSec, Ritalin, and Failing Fast" AppSec, Ritalin, and Failing Fast Presentation

Abstract: In early April Ken Johnson and Matt Ahrens presented a high-level overview of building an Application Security program at LivingSocial. This talk will differ in that it will focus on the granular aspects involved with introducing security into an incredibly intense development environment. The discussion will be compromised of experiences in:

  • Developing technical solutions to solving difficult challenges
  • Remaining proactive with an increased workload
  • What it means to innovate

Speaker Bio:

Ken Johnson is the Application Security Manager for Prior to joining, Ken worked in various application security consulting roles. Ken is the primary developer of the Web Exploitation Framework (wXf) and enjoys contributing to other open source projects as often as time permits. Ken has spoken at AppSec DC 2010 & 2012, OWASP DC and Phoenix chapters and is a member of the Attack Research Team.

May 2012

Date/Time: May 3rd, 2012 @ 6pm

Location Sponsor: Living Social, 11600 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston, VA


* News / Updates
* "Chill Out" conversations (formal talked pushed back due to logistical issues)

April 2012

Date/Time: April 16th, 2012 @ 6pm

Location Sponsor: Living Social, 11600 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston, VA

Food Sponsor: Jeremy Long - jeremy.long[at]


* News / Updates
* Talk: "Malicious Code Detection or BRIC Breaking Through Static Analysis" by Masha Khainson (Cigital)
* Firetalks!
* ISSA NoVA Social @Champps!  :)

Presentation Title: "Malicious Code Detection or BRIC Breaking Through Static Analysis"

Abstract: Malicious Code Detection or BRIC Breaking Through Static Analysis: As organizations outsource development to less trustworthy providers malware becomes as much a problem as introduction of honest vulnerability by one's own development shop. Assessment practices currently look for vulnerability within source code and a running systems but these are but a few of windows of opportunity for malware introduction. This presentation demonstrates an approach for augmenting an existing security practice with the capability to detect potentially malicious code through secure code review. First, we show how to break malicious intent--often quite subtle--into concrete patterns we can reliably detect. The framework then demonstrates how to build suspicion around reliance of particular patterns' use in concert which, increasingly, imply malicious intent. These techniques will be explained through a demonstration in a real world application.

Bio Masha (a.k.a Marina) has dreamed of becoming a security consultant before she ever knew what a ballerina was, and that's a good thing - because she does not intend her talk to be a ballet recital. Having been in software security for over seven years, Ms. Khainson has delivered Architecture Risk Assessment, Secure Code Review, and Ethical Hacking on many architectures, platforms and technologies. Marina has also developed training materials for clients and led remediation assistance teams.

Prior to joining Cigital, Marina was a member of a research team at a leading security research provider, where using disassembly as well as protocol and source code analysis, she provided key information on newly released vulnerabilities. Before that, Marina assisted the same research team in producing detailed reports on critical malware and spyware threats, as well as developing and testing content for network security devices from some of the top providers of intrusion detection and prevention technologies.

Download: Malicious Code Detection or BRIC Breaking Through Static Analysis

November 2011

Date/Time: November 3rd, 2011 @ 6pm

Location Sponsor: QinetiQ, 2677 Prosperity Ave Fairfax, VA 22031


# News / Updates
# Talk: "Lessons Learned from the SQL Injection Challenge" by Ryan Barnett (Trustwave SpiderLabs)
# Firetalks! :)

Presentation Title: "Lessons Learned from the SQL Injection Challenge"

Abstract: How effective are blacklist filters vs. SQL Injection attacks? What is the failure rate vs. automated scanning or manual testing? Are there any "Time-to-Bypass" metrics? In an attempt to answer these questions, Trustwave SpiderLabs' Research Team (the development team behind the ModSecurity WAF and the OWASP ModSecurity Core Rule Set) held a community "SQL Injection Challenge" to test the effectiveness of the OWASP ModSecurity Core Rule Set protections. This presentation will provide an overview of the challenge, a step-by-step walk-through of the bypass tactics used by the winners, as well as, present a new approach to attack detection using ModSecurity's Lua API to perform Bayesian analysis.

Speaker Bio: Ryan C. Barnett (Twitter: @ryancbarnett) is a senior security researcher on Trustwave's SpiderLabs Team. He is a SANS Institute certified instructor and a member of both the Top 20 Vulnerabilities and CWE/SANS Top 25 Most Dangerous Programming Errors teams. In addition to working with SANS, he is also a WASC Member where he leads the Web Hacking Incidents Database (WHID) and Distributed Web Honeypots Projects and is also the OWASP ModSecurity Core Rule Set (CRS) project leader. Mr. Barnett has also authored a Web security book for Addison/Wesley Publishing entitled "Preventing Web Attacks with Apache".

October 2011

Date/Time: October 6th, 2011 @ 6pm

Location/Food Sponsor: Cigital, 21351 Ridgetop Circle, Suite 400, Sterling, VA 20166


* News / Updates
* AppSec USA 2011 Recap
* Talk: Jack Mannino: "OWASP Top 10 Mobile Risks"
* Firetalks! :)

September 2011

The September meeting was cancelled due to inclement weather (flash flooding).

August 2011

We held a "social" event at Sweetwater Tavern in Sterling, VA.

July 2011

Date/Time: July 7th, 2011 @ 6pm
Location Sponsor: Cigital, Suite 400 21351 Ridgetop Circle, Dulles, VA, 20166
Food Sponsor:

* News / Updates
* Topic of the Month: iGoat - Ken Van Wyk

June 2011

Date/Time: June 9th, 2011 @ 6pm (*Note: 2nd Thursday of June!)
Location Sponsor: The College Board, 11955 Democracy Drive Reston, VA 20190
Food Sponsor: The College Board

* News / Updates
* Topic of the Month: A4 "Insecure Direct Object References"
* College Board Speaker: "Attack-in-Depth:  Exploits of the OWASP Top Ten in Action"
* Firetalks! :)
- Jack Mannino: "Android Security 101"
- Others!

May 2011

Date/Time: Cinco de Mayo (May 5th), 2011 @ 6pm
Location Sponsor: Akamai, 11111 Sunset Hills Dr, Suite 250, Reston, VA 20190
Food Sponsor: Akamai

* News / Updates
* 2011 Election (voice vote on the entire slate)
* Topic of the Month: A3 "Broken Authentication and Session Management"
* Speaker: Steve Witmer on A3 from the "breakers" perspective
* Speaker: ??? on A3 from the "fixers/defenders" perspective
* Firetalks! :)
* Update: All election candidates were elected by voice vote. 
   * Please see: '11 Chapter Board Election Material

April 2011

Date/Time: April 7, 2011 @ 6pm
Location Sponsor: ReverseSpace, 13505 Dulles Technology Dr, Suite 3, Herndon, VA 20171
Food Sponsor: Cigital

* News / Updates
* 2011 Election
* Topic of the Month: A2 "Cross-Site Scripting (XSS)"
* Preso:"Cross-Site Scripting is Not Your Friend: XSS and the Facebook Platform" by Joey Tyson (PPTX or PDF)
* Preso:“XSS Remediation” by Cassia Martin (PPT)
* Preso:"Growing the secure application developer community through expanded curricula" by Tony Gottlieb
* FireTalks (bring it!)

March 2011

Date/Time: March 3, 2011 @ 6pm
Location Sponsor: Booz Allen Hamilton, 13200 Woodland Park Road, Herndon, VA 20171

 * News / Updates
 * OWASP Summit 2011 In Review
 * Preso: A1 "Injection"
 * Briefing: Training/Preso Plan for the Year

February 2011

Date/Time: February 3, 2011 @ 6pm
Location Sponsor: Akamai, 11111 Sunset HIlls Dr, Suite 250, Reston, VA 20190

 * News / Updates
 * Feedback for OWASP Summit 2011
 * Preso: Intro to OWASP Top 10 + 2
 * Briefing: Training/Preso Plan for the Year

December 2010

Date/Time: December 2, 2010 @ 6pm
Location Sponsor: ReverseSpace, 13505 Dulles Technology Drive, Herndon, VA

  * 2011 Planning Session (Schedule, Volunteers, Speakers, Topics)
 * Lightning Talks!! (Bring an idea, a question, a topic, whatever - 5-10 minute talks max!)
 * Social / Networking (BYOB!)

November 2010

Date/Time: November 4, 2010 @ 6pm
Location Sponsor: Akamai, 11111 Sunset Hills Rd, Suite #250, Reston, VA
Speaker: Ben Tomhave
Title: The Unintended Consequences of Beating Users with Carrot Sticks: Radical Thoughts on Security Reform
Description: What we're doing today is not working and isn't sustainable. The fundamental culture of the average business does not encourage making good security decisions. Software shops continue to focus on functionality and timelines, neglecting information security. In spite of regulations like PCI and HIPAA+HITECH, which are levying fines against organizations for their security failures, the tipping point has clearly not been reached to cause meaningful change. Much of this problem can be attributed to the excessive use of negative incentives (sticks) instead of providing positive incentives (carrots) that inspire better decision making and motivate true change. Fortunately, it's not too late to change tactics and start achieving demonstrable success.
Speaker Bio: Ben Tomhave is a Senior Security Analyst with Gemini Security Solutions in Chantilly, VA, specializing in solutions architecture, security planning, program development and management, and other strategic security solutions. He holds a MS in Engineering Management with an Information Security Management concentration from The George Washington University and is a CISSP.

June 2010

DATE: Thursday, June 3rd, 6pm Eastern Daylight Time
LOCATION: Booz Allen Hamilton - 13200 Woodland Park Road Herndon, VA 20171
SPEAKER: Alex Hutton, Verizon Business and
TOPIC: Risk Management - Time to blow it up and start over?


A redux of the presentation that Alex delivered at B-Sides San Francisco during RSA 2010. "Now that the industry is trying to formalize the concept of risk management into neat little compartments like standards (ISO 27005/31000), certifications (CRISC) and products (GRC) guess what? We're doing it wrong. Fundamentally wrong. This talk will discuss why all this current risk management stuff is goofy and what sort of alternatives we have that might help us understand our ability to protect, our tendency towards failure, and how to match that up with what management will stomach."

Slides are available from: Risk Management - Time to blow it up and start over?


Tiffany Rad provided an overview and update on Reverse Space in Herndon, VA. For more information, or to help out, please join the Reverse Space Google Group.

May 2010

DATE: Tuesday, May 18th, 6pm Eastern Daylight Time
LOCATION: Booz Allen Hamilton - 13200 Woodland Park Road Herndon, VA 20171
SPEAKER': Jeff Ennis, Senior Solutions Architect, Veracode
TITLE: State of Software Security (Media:State of Software DESCRIPTION: A discussion of the current state of software security based on the compiled findings by Veracode from the dynamic and static code analysis they have performed for customers.

September 2009

DATE: Thursday, September 17, 2009. 6:00pm Eastern Daylight Time
LOCATION: 22260 Pacific blvd, Sterling, VA. 20166
TOPIC: "Fortify 360"
SPEAKER: Erik Klein (Fortify Software), Eric Dalci (Cigital)

We're pleased to invite you to our next week's OWASP Session (Thursday September 17th). We will be hosting a presentation, demo and hands on session of Fortify 360 ( Fortify 360 includes Fortify SCA (Source Code Analyzer) and the Fortify 360 Server which is Fortify's solution for an enterprise deployment of SCA. The session will start with a presentation by Fortify engineers, followed by a demo and finally a hands on session where the audience will be free to install Fortify SCA on the machine and try it the SCA tool on a sample application that we will provide. The audience will also be introduced with the Fortify 360 Server and try some of the enterprise level features such as collaborative code review, metrics and so on. Bring your laptop if you want to try Fortify 360!

The target audience is anyone interested in Secure Code Review with a Static Analysis tool at the desktop level and/or enterprise level. We will need to register visitors before hand...please email [email protected] for registration and confirm attendance. Pizza and refreshments will be served.

DATE: Thursday, September 3, 2009. 6:00pm.
LOCATION: 13200 Woodland Park Road Herndon, VA 20171
TOPIC: "Conducting Application Assessment"
SPEAKER: Jeremy Epstein, SRI

After the 2000 election, many states launched headlong into electronic voting systems to avoid the problems with "hanging chads". Once problems with those systems started appearing, many localities started moving to optical scan, which was used by a majority of US voters in the 2008 election. There are other technologies in use around the country, including lever machines, vote-by-mail, vote-by-phone, and Internet voting. What are the tradeoffs among these technologies? Particularly relevant to OWASP, what are the security issues associated with different types of equipment, and what measures do vendors of voting equipment use to try to address the security problems? Are software security problems important, or can non-technical measures protect against them? In this talk, we'll discuss a wide variety of voting technologies, and their pros and cons from both a technical and societal perspective.


Jeremy Epstein is Senior Computer Scientist at SRI International. His background includes more than 20 years experience in computer security research, product development, and consulting. Prior to joining SRI International, he was Principal Consultant with Cigital, and before that spent nine years as Senior Director of Product Security at Software AG, an international business software company. Within the area of voting systems, Jeremy has been involved for over five years in voting technology and advocacy, both as an employee and as an independent consultant.

July 2009

DATE: July 9th 6pm-9pm EST
LOCATION: 13200 Woodland Park Road Herndon, VA 20171
TOPIC: "Ounce's 02"
SPEAKER(S): Dinis Cruz, OWASP, Ounce Labs.
DESCRIPTION: So what is O2?

Well in my mind O2 is a combination of advanced tools (Technology) which are designed to be used on a particular way (Process) by knowledgeable Individuals (People)

Think about it as a Fighter Jet who is able to go very fast, has tons of controls, needs to be piloted by somebody who knows what they are doing and needs to have a purpose (i.e. mission).

Basically what I did with O2 was to automate the workflow that I have when I'm engaged on a source-code security review.

Now, here is the catch, this version is NOT for the faint-of-heart. I designed this to suit my needs, which although are the same as most other security consultants, have its own particularities :)

The whole model of O2 development is based around the concept of automating a security consultant’s brain, so I basically ensure that the main O2 Developer (Dinis Cruz) has a very good understanding of the feature requirements of the targeted Security Consultant (Dinis Cruz) :) . And this proved (even to my surprise) spectacularly productive, since suddenly I (i.e. the security consultant) didn't had to wait months for new features to be added to its toolkit. If there was something that needed to be added, it would just be added in days or hours.

June 2009

Gary McGraw, Cigital Inc.:Building Security In Maturity Model
Later, an interview: Jim Routh, formerly of DTCC:The Economic Advantages of a Resilient Supply Chain- Software Security

Gary McGraw talked about the experience he, Sammy Migues, and Brian Chess gained conducting a survey of some of America's top Software Security groups. Study results are available under the Creative Commons Share Alike license at Gary described the common structural elements and activities of successful software security programs, present the maturity model that resulted from survey data, and discuss lessons learned from listening to those leading these groups.

Jim Routh gave an incredibly insightful interview regarding his own experiences crafting their security group.

Download presentation notes at: The Economic Advantages of a Resilient Supply Chain- Software Security

May 2009

Eric Dalci, Cigital Inc.:Introduction to Static Analysis
Later, a panel:

  • Steven Lavenhar, Booz Allen Hamilton;
  • Eric Dalci, Cigital Inc.

Panel moderated by John Steven

This session is an introductory to Static Analysis. This session presents the different types of analysis used by today's Static Analysis tools. Examples of direct application to find vulnerabilities will be shown (ex: Data Flow Analysis, Semantic, Control Flow, etc.). Current limitations of Static Analysis will also be exposed. This session is tool agnostic, but will cover the approach taken by various leading commercial (as well as open-source) tools.

Download: Intro to Static Analysis

April 2009

Jeremiah Grossman, Whitehat Security: Top 10 Web Hacking Techniques 2008
Jeremiah Spoke on (what he and colleagues determined were the) top ten web hacking techniques of 2008. This talk was a preview of his RSA '09 talk.



  • Nate Miller, Stratum Security;
  • Jeremiah Grossman, Whitehat Security;
  • Tom Brennan, Whitehat Security; and
  • Wade Woolwine, AOL

served as penetration testing panels answering questions posed and moderated by Ken Van Wyk.

February 2009

Ryan C. Barnett, Breach Security: Patching Challenge: Securing WebGoat with ModSecurity

Identification of web application vulnerabilities is only half the battle with remediation efforts as the other. Let's face the facts, there are many real world business scenarios where it is not possible to update web application code in either a timely manner or at all. This is where the tactical use-case of implementing a web application firewall to address identified issues proves its worth.

This talk will provide an overview of the recommended practices for utilizing a web application firewall for virtual patching. After discussing the framework to use, we will then present a very interesting OWASP Summer of Code Project where the challenge was to attempt to mitigate as many of the OWASP WebGoat vulnerabilities as possible using the open source ModSecurity web application firewall. During the talk, we will discuss both WebGoat and ModSecurity and provide in-depth walk-throughs of some of the complex fixes. Examples will include addressing not only attacks but the underlying vulnerabilities, using data persistence for multiple-step processes, content injection and even examples of the new LUA programming language API. The goal of this talk is to both highlight cutting edge mitigation options using a web application firewall and to show how it can effectively be used by security consultants who traditionally could only offer source code fixes.

Ryan C. Barnett is the Director of Application Security Research at Breach Security and leads Breach Security Labs. He is also a Faculty Member for the SANS Institute, Team Lead for the Center for Internet Security Apache Benchmark Project and a Member of the Web Application Security Consortium where he leads the Distributed Open Proxy Honeypot Project. Mr. Barnett has also authored a web security book for Addison/Wesley Publishing entitled "Preventing Web Attacks with Apache."

(This talk is a preview of Ryan's talk at Blackhat Federal the following week - see )

Download WAF Virtual Patching Challenge: Securing WebGoat with ModSecurity

John Steven, Cigital: Moving Beyond Top N Lists

Download Moving Beyond Top N Lists

Cigital published an article: The Top 11 Reasons Why Top 10 (or 25) Lists Don’t Work. Yet, these lists are a staple of conference abstracts, industry best practice lists, and the like. Are they good or bad? We’ll explore how to get beyond the Top 10 (or 25) list in making your software security effort real.

John is Senior Director, Advanced Technology Consulting at Cigital. His experience includes research in static code analysis and hands-on architecture and implementation of high-performance, scalable Java EE systems. John has provided security consulting services to a broad variety of commercial clients including two of the largest trading platforms in the world and has advised America's largest internet provider in the Midwest on security and forensics. John led the development of Cigital's architectural analysis methodology and its approach to deploying enterprise software security frameworks. He has demonstrated success in building Cigital's intellectual property for providing cutting-edge security. He brings this experience and a track record of effective strategic innovation to clients seeking to change, whether to adopt more cutting-edge approaches, or to solidify ROI. John currently chairs the SD Best Practices security track and co-edits the building security in department of IEEE's Security and Privacy magazine. John has served on numerous conference panels regarding software security, wireless security and Java EE system development. He holds a B.S. in Computer Engineering and an M.S. in Computer Science from Case Western Reserve University.

January 2009

To kick off 2009, our January meeting featured a discussion of the relationship between application security and CMMI, and an overview of the OWASP ASVS project.

Michele Moss, Booz Allen Hamilton: Evolutions In The Relationship Between Application Security And The CMMI

Addressing new and complex threats and IT security challenges requires repeatable, reliable, rapid, and cost effective solutions. To implement these solutions, organizations have begun to align their security improvement efforts with their system and software development practices. During a “Birds of a Feather” at the March 2007 SEPG, a group of industry representatives initiated an effort which led to the definition of assurance practices that can be applied in the context of the CMMI. This presentation will provide an understanding how applying the assurance practices in the context of security contribute to the overall increased quality of products and services, illustrate how the a focus on assurance in the context of CMMI practices is related to application security practices, and present and approach to evaluate and improve the repeatability and reliability of assurance practices.

Michele Moss, CISSP, is a security engineer with more than 12 years of experience in process improvement. She specializes in integrating assurance processes and practices into project lifecycles. Michele is the Co-Chair of the DHS Software Assurance Working Group on Processes & Practices. She has assisted numerous organizations with maturing their information technology, information assurance, project management, and support practices through the use of the capability maturity models including the CMMI, and the SSE-CMM. She is one of the key contributors in an effort to apply an assurance focus to CMMI.

Slides available: Evolutions In The Relationship Between Application Security And The CMMI

Mike Boberski, Booz Allen Hamilton: About OWASP ASVS

The primary aim of the OWASP ASVS Project is to normalize the range of coverage and level of rigor available in the market when it comes to performing application-level security verification. The goal is to create a set of commercially-workable open standards that are tailored to specific web-based technologies.

Mike Boberski works at Booz Allen Hamilton. He has a background in application security and the use of cryptography by applications. He is experienced in trusted product evaluation, security-related software development and integration, and cryptomodule testing. For OWASP, he is the project lead and a co-author of the OWASP Application Security Verification Standard, the first OWASP standard.

Slides available: About OWASP ASVS

November 2008

For our November 2008 meeting, we had two great presentations on software assurance and security testing.

Nadya Bartol, Booz Allen Hamilton: Framework for Software Assurance

Nadya's presentation will provide an update on the Software Assurance Forum efforts to establish a comprehensive framework for software assurance (SwA) and security measurement. The Framework addresses measuring achievement of SwA goals and objectives within the context of individual projects, programs, or enterprises. It targets a variety of audiences including executives, developers, vendors, suppliers, and buyers. The Framework leverages existing measurement methodologies, including Practical Software and System Measurement (PSM); CMMI Goal, Question, Indicator, Measure (GQ(I)M); NIST SP 800-55 Rev1; and ISO/IEC 27004 and identifies commonalities among the methodologies to help organizations integrate SwA measurement in their overall measurement efforts cost-effectively and as seamlessly as possible, rather than establish a standalone SwA measurement effort within an organization. The presentation will provide an update on the SwA Forum Measurement Working Group work, present the current version of the Framework and underlying measures development and implementation processes, and propose example SwA measures applicable to a variety of SwA stakeholders. The presentation will update the group on the latest NIST and ISO standards on information security measurement that are being integrated into the Framework as the standards are being developed.

Slides available: Framework for Software Assurance

Paco Hope, Cigital: The Web Security Testing Cookbook

The Web Security Testing Cookbook (O'Reilly & Associates, October 2008) gives developers and testers the tools they need to make security testing a regular part of their development lifecycle. Its recipe style approach covers manual, exploratory testing as well automated techniques that you can make part of your unit tests or regression cycle. The recipes cover the basics like observing messages between clients and servers, to multi-phase tests that script the login and execution of web application features. This book complements many of the security texts in the market that tell you what a vulnerability is, but not how to systematically test it day in and day out. Leverage the recipes in this book to add significant security coverage to your testing without adding significant time and cost to your effort.

Congratulations to Tim Bond who won an autographed copy of Paco's book. Get your copy here [[1]]

Slides available: The Web Security Testing Cookbook

October 2008

For our October 2008 meeting, we had two fascinating talks relating to forensics.

Dave Merkel, Mandiant: Enterprise Grade Incident Management - Responding to Persistent Threats

Dave Merkel is Vice President of Products at Mandiant, a leading provider of information security services, education and products. Mr. Merkel has worked in the information security and incident response industry for over 10 years. His background includes service as a federal agent in the US Air Force and over 7 years experience directing security operations at America Online. He currently oversees the product business at Mandiant, and is in charge of building Mandiant Intelligent Response - an enterprise incident response solution. But no, he won't be selling you anything today.

Slides available: Enterprise Grade Incident Management - Responding to Persistent Threats

Inno Eroraha, NetSecurity: Responding to the Digital Crime Scene: Gathering Volatile Data

Inno Eroraha is the founder and chief strategist of NetSecurity Corporation, a company that provides digital forensics, hands-on security consulting, and Hands-on How-To® training solutions that are high-quality, timely, and customer-focused. In this role, Mr. Eroraha helps clients plan, formulate, and execute the best security and forensics strategy that aligns with their business goals and priorities. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, IRS, DHS, VA, DoD, and other entities.

Slides available: Responding to the Digital Crime Scene: Gathering Volatile Data


The original DC Chapter was founded in June 2004 by Jeff Williams and has had members from Virginia to Delaware. In April 2005 a new chapter, OWASP Washington VA Local Chapter, was formed and the DC Chapter was renamed to DC-Maryland. The two are sister chapters and include common members and shared discourse. The chapters meet in opposite halves of the month to facilitate this relationship.

Chapter Groups

Within the chapter, various common interests spring up. We've created Google groups to manage collaboration amongst participants for these topics. Feel free to join and participate in:

OWASP NoVa Members On Twitter

Mike McCabe

John Steven

Jack Mannino

Ben Tomhave

Ken Johnson

Mike Smith

Trevor Hawthorn

Jeremy Long

Ari Elias-Bachrach

Venkat Sundaram


The Northern Virginia (NoVA) chapter is committed to compiling resources on interesting and valuable topic areas. We hope that this structure helps you access information pertinent to your tasks at hand as you move through a secure application development life cycle. Currently, our topic areas of focus include activities such as:

Certain projects our members are involved in cross-cut these activities, providing value throughout. They include:

  • ASVS

Static Analysis Curriculum

  • For an introduction to the OWASP Static Analysis (SA) Track goals, objectives, and session roadmap, please see this presentation.

The following is the agenda of the OWASP Static Analysis track roadmap for the Northern Virginia Chapter.

OWASP Static Analysis Roadmap - Northern Virginia Chapter 2009

Questions related to this curriculum should be sent to John Steven, who is the Northern Virginia chapter leader.

Flash Talk Resources

Chandu Ketkar on OFS. Download: OFS Presentation.
Jack Mannino on Google and Searching for Personal Information
Jesse Ou on XML Bombs. Download: XML DTD Presentation

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