Adventures in Dubrovnik

Opinion by pfisher

In my report on the front page of the SC.com I mentioned that there is no AV company like Kaspersky. Why is that?...

In my report on the front page of the SC.com I mentioned that there is no AV company like Kaspersky. Why is that? I spoke to many different people at the recent Virus Analyst Summit (VAS) held in Dubrovnik and most had the feeling that the Moscow based business is pretty unique.

It's not just because it is Russian, although I think that to Western eyes that still gives it some degree of exoticism even this long after the end of the Cold War. It's not just because it is led by the charismatic Eugene Kaspersky, although it's hard to imagine Dave DeWalt or Enrique Salem offering you whisky and cigars before an interview (although John Chambers might offer you a bible).

Most press tours are just that; press tours -usually heavily linked to a product launch or some PR driven survey findings. They are strictly scheduled, heavily targeted and PR'd for maximum exposure. And journalists tend to go away from them as cynical as they came.

Kaspersky is different. It's twice-yearly international press tour is linked to the  VAS and it brings together journalists from all over the world. There is no real agenda other than to present research findings and analysis. You also get the chance to speak to as many Kaspersky experts as you like. It is relaxed and fun.

In fact it's a lot of fun. This particular trip included a whole day on the beach on one of the islands near Dubrovnik. There, journalists, PRs Kaspersky execs and their families ate, drank and swam to their hearts content. It felt like a family day out - which in many ways it was.

Of course I am not naive enough not to know that if you treat journos like this they are bound to be better disposed to you (actually that's not always true - there are members of the press who curiously seem to treat a company worse the better it treats them!).

But there are ways and means.  Kaspersky for whatever reason (accident or design) seems to have divined the way to do it.
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