Unless you’ve been hiding from the internet over the weekend, chances are you’ll have heard about the extraordinary DDoS attack on DNS provider Dyn which took down major websites including Twitter, Reddit, Amazon, Spotify and AirBnB. The story broke on a Friday afternoon (as these stories always seem to) and it was all systems go in the Eskenzi office, firing the story off to our clients, hungry for any extra information, opinion and insight that they could give.

A story of this magnitude is relevant for all of our clients which means that we have to get good content from each of them individually, we also want to make sure they all work well together. Asking them all different questions, finding each of their research on DDoS and working with them all in different time zones means we could get different content pitched from each client, which got some fantastic results:

The story continues to develop and the problem isn’t going away any time soon so we’re keeping our eyes peeled on the story on behalf of our clients.

The Security Serious Unsung Heroes Awards took place Tuesday night at St Bart’s Brewery in London and honoured those who work tirelessly to avert disasters from attacks against our critical national infrastructure, defend their networks from the daily onslaught of breaches and highlight the cyber pitfalls to educate everyone.

The list of winners is below:

  • CISO Supremo (sponsored by Varonis)
  • Mark Jones, Allen & Overy
  • Avtar Sehmbi, HSBC
  • Dr Robert Coles, GSK
  • Thom Langford, Publicis Groupe
  • Andrew Rose, NATS
  • Godfather of Security (sponsored by GSK)
  • Brian Shorten, Charities Security Forum
  • Professor Fred Piper, Royal Holloway University
  • Security Avengers (sponsored by Lastline)
  • Publicis Groupe Team
  • Best Security Awareness Campaign (sponsored by Publicis Groupe)
  • Amar Singh, GiveADay
  • Social Media Saviour (sponsored by Proofpoint)
  • Katie Sanderson, Lockcode Cyber Security
  • Mobile Mogul
  • Charles Brookson, Azenby
  • Security Leader (sponsored by Acumin)
  • Quentyn Taylor, Canon
  • Cloud Security Superhero (sponsored by Mimecast)
  • Andrew Hardie, BCS
  • Fraud Fighter (sponsored by Imperva)
  • Luis Aguair, Metro Bank
  • Game Changer (Sponsored by CrowdStrike)
  • Hugh Boyes, IET Cyber Security
  • Marathon (Wo)Man (sponsored by Eskenzi PR)
  • Vicki Gavin, Economist Group
  • Spidey Sense (Sponsored by AlienVault)
  • Professor John Walker, HEX Forensics
  • Captain Compliance (Sponsored by Netskope)
  • Eddie Dynes, Gatwick Airport
  • Cyber Writer (Sponsored by Smile on Fridays)
  • Warwick Ashford, Computer Weekly

The free event was a chance for the UK security industry to get together, network and enjoy a short awards ceremony compered by the immensely witty and humorous Clive Room, Chair of the White Hat Ball Committee.

Lead organiser of Security Serious Week, Yvonne Eskenzi, Director of Eskenzi PR said:  “The daily headlines of hacks and breaches emphasises the challenges the UK and the rest of the world face – but that doesn’t mean we should roll over. The Unsung Heroes Awards means professionals from the private and public sectors, plus media and bloggers, will finally gain the recognition they deserve. Hopefully, these individuals will act as ambassadors for the profession, encouraging any promising hackers to join the good fight rather than be lured over to the dark side.”

David Peach of the Economist Group described the evening as “A really fun event to celebrate the UK security community” while Martyn Croft from the Salvation Army called it “The best unknown awards in the world.”

The Unsung Heroes Awards are part of Security Serious Week, a week long campaign that aims to arm individuals and organisations with the intelligence and capabilities to thwart attacks. You can still take part by registering for a number of free webinars going on throughout the week.

To register interest for next year’s Unsung Heroes Awards or Security Serious Week, please contact: Beth Smith, Eskenzi PR, beth@eskenzipr.com or phone 02071832843.



Last Friday our clients’ comments were published in hundreds of different publications across the UK, US, France and Germany, here is how we did it:

On Thursday morning reports started to surface that Yahoo was expected to announce a huge data breach so we notified our clients straight away and asked them to prepare comments on the information that was available so that we could jump on the story as soon as it broke. Our clients prepared comments and then it was just a waiting game.

Around 8pm on Thursday night the story broke, Yahoo had officially announced the breach. So we immediately told our clients and asked if they needed to update their comments given the new information. As many of them are based in the US, they were still at work so getting a quick response wasn’t difficult.

By 9pm we had issued the comments to national and security press. Minutes later, Al Jazeera asked for a television interview and we managed to get a client on air that same evening.

Before even getting into the office the next morning we were already getting interview requests from the likes of ITN and International Business Times UK, let’s just say it was a very busy day of rushing around trying to get clients to TV studios in ridiculously tight deadlines (it’s situations like this that a private jet would be useful). We also asked our teams in France and Germany to translate the comments and issue them out (these are regions where responding to news like this is not the norm).

200387165-001The results were pretty incredible, the Press Association article syndicated across 447 publications, so the clients that were lucky enough to be mentioned in the article achieved a year’s worth of coverage in one day! Hits included, the Daily Mail, Independent and Huffington Post. In France, Le Figaro (a big national newspaper) even covered the story and other hits included InformatiqueNews.fr and Speicherguide in Germany.

What was interesting was that the few clients who were not quick enough to give us comment on Thursday did not get much coverage at all, even though we had sent their comments out on Friday morning before 10am. This is likely to be because journalists were so saturated with comments that they only used the first batch they received and wanted to push their stories out as soon as possible. So it really paid off that we were prepared to work unsociable hours on Thursday night (although let’s hope this doesn’t start happening too often).


Imperva released its annual DDoS Threat Landscape report in August and we were tasked with pitching it out globally.

One of the biggest problems we face when issuing annual trend reports from our clients is that because so many vendors produce similar reports, unless they are saying something really significant, they are not always of the greatest interest to press. This means before a client starts working on a report we will discuss the results and establish its newsworthiness. In this case, Imperva’s DDoS report proved to be very newsworthy.

Imperva’s report analysed DDoS attacks over the last year in order to track changes and look at how the threat landscape is evolving. Two of the key findings from the report were that the UK is now the second most targeted country with DDoS attacks, and that South Korea has taken the top spot for countries launching DDoS attacks, overtaking China for the very first time.

We pitched out the report in France, Germany, the UK and the US and the results will pretty unbelievable and far better than we could ever have expected. We generated 50 pieces of coverage globally with top hits in the Wall Street Journal, International Business Times, Dark Reading, FedScoop, IDG, Wired, TechWeekEurope, SC Magazine, Le Monde Informatique, Solutions-Numeriques.com, CIO-Online, Silicon.fr, and many more.

Needless to say, both Eskenzi PR and Imperva were delighted with the results.

Last year over 2,700 people tuned in to our series of educational webinars over Security Serious Week – so we’re doing it all over again this year! During the week of October 3rd, we’ll be hosting 40 webinars with industry experts to educate people about security.

Webinars are hosted on our Brighttalk channel and are promoted on the IT Security Guru and Security Serious website. Analysts, CISO and industry vendors have all signed up to run a webinar this year on topics ranging from insider threats to the Internet of Things. You can view the full lineup and sign up to the webinars here.

The good news is we have a handful of slots left for you to run a webinar on your chosen topic.

Webinars are hosted on the hour, every hour from 10am – 5pm Monday to Friday, for 45 minutes each. This allows for 30 minutes presentation and 15 minutes for questions at the end. There will be a member of the IT Security Guru team to introduce the speaker and handle any questions that come in for a short Q&A at the end.

For your chance to grab one of the few slots left to run a webinar, send the below to Katie@itsecurityguru.org :

  1. Proposed title
  2. Speaker
  3. Short synopsis of the proposed webinar
  4. Logo
  5. Availability for the week of October 3rd to host a 45 minute webinar

PLEASE NOTE: This is not an opportunity to promote vendor products or services. We want these webinars to be educational, thought-provoking sessions that will encourage discussion and debate around security and how we can make it work for the business of today. Submitted synopses that sound like sales pitches will be ignored.

happy-21-birthdayYou know when you think about starting something you don’t really have a game plan in mind – well I didn’t.  It was the 1st September 1995 and I’d just taken a gap year aged 31 with Neil Stinchcombe, my husband and partner in crime.  It wasn’t the “done thing”; we had a mortgage, great jobs, were really at the height of our careers and all our friends were settled down and onto their second child!  Neil swore after travelling he’d never go back into Accountancy, but he did (for the first two years and then saw the light and came and joined me).  I sat at my desk on Monday 1st September and started writing to everyone I knew to see if they needed PR! The first job that came in was a mate on The Sun newspaper who got me going. It’s always a mate that helps out in the beginning, right? I’d worked at News International doing PR and marketing for its new exhibitions division, so it was a natural lead.  My next big break came from a friend who had just starting working at Reed Exhibitions on this really very alien sounding event called Infosecurity Europe – what the hell were IT security, viruses, firewalls, networks, routers? You’ve got to be kidding me!  However, they’d taken on a PR agency to launch it, but they hadn’t the faintest idea how to launch exhibitions – now that was something I’d had lots of practice at!  One thing I knew was how to pull in the crowds, so I convinced the FT to write a whole page on cyber-security frightening facts and hey presto, the rest is history – Eskenzi PR had begun its journey into the unchartered world of IT security. With very few other agencies venturing into that space – little did I know that would be our calling for the next 20 years.

Eskenzi retained Reed Exhibitions for 17 years – not bad considering they were our second client ever.  To be honest, tech was never my calling, you just have to know me to realise that clothes, jewellery and interior design is really where I should have spent my misspent youth, but the people in this industry have been incredible.  It’s a real community of decent, down to earth, genuine people who have been good to Eskenzi PR and we’ve had nothing but fun for the past 21 years.

In that time, we’ve gone from viruses and firewalls – gosh that was a wee bit boring, to fantastic hacks and breaches, state on state sponsored attacks, malware, bug bounties you name, we’ve got our clients talking on it – and hey what do you know – suddenly what we do in the cyber-security industry is exciting. That sure wasn’t predicted or planned!  It was just fluke that we ended up in the most exciting, happening industry far more fun than doing plain old PR promoting the local shop or next big launch of a hand-bag!  How much more fun to be talking about squirmy, dangerous bugs that could spell disaster and eat up your phone!!

It’s all about turning geek speak into real speak and making it clear for everyone to understand and to be honest I think that’s stayed within the Eskenzi DNA – we think national press before thinking techie press!  Not a day goes by when we’re not dreaming up a way to present our clients in a way that will appeal to the masses – we always think first “will this appeal to our friends and our mums and dads?”   Our mantra has always been to turn our clients’ dreams into reality – it seems very corny written down in black and white but it’s true – if you can, why not and to be honest? It’s a simple equation – Happy CMO + Happy Board = Happy Days!

So from 21 years ago when I set up in my dining room, soon to be pregnant with daughter no.1, closely followed by daughter no.2 (which then required husband no.1 to join me to grow said business), we grew out of the dining room, built a loft, grew out of loft no.1, moved to house no.2, built loft no.2, had 17 happy years in loft no.2, until our neighbours had had enough and we had to move out!  This actually was the best move possible, because we’re now in our incredible HQ in North London, just around the corner from house no.2.  For those that have never been here, it’s a converted 2 storey Victorian warehouse which we’ve totally stripped, modernised and put windows everywhere, with huge tall ceilings, lots of colours, art and chandeliers.

Apart from our great offices here in London, we now have a brilliant team in Paris, Munich and San Francisco – that’s a team of 25! Not huge, but perfectly proportioned with just over 20 clients who have stuck with us for an average of 7 years.

We’re also not just about PR as we just can’t help ourselves getting stuck into doing fun things!

So next year we will be arranging our tenth IT security analyst & CISO forum which is 3 events rolled into one, we’ve got the www.itsecurityguru.org which is a news site that captures the top 10 stories of the day and we’re running for the second year Security Serious Week.  Boy that’s coming up fast and furiously with the intention of encouraging people to enter our lovely industry, get security specialists offering their time for free by doing 40 webinars so UK Plc is more security serious and we have the Security Serious Conference taking place on 3rd October at the Department of Culture Media and Sports.  As if that’s not enough, just because we’re suckers for trouble, we’ve also decided to organise the Security Serious Unsung Heroes Awards on 4th October which is all about recognising the people, not the products, who work tirelessly behind the scenes saving our bacon but rarely get rewarded for it!  Tickets for both events can be found at www.securityserious.com or click here.

Looking back over the past 21 years I can say it’s been the best journey ever, making the most incredible friends along the way, enjoying working with some wonderful clients and of course having the smartest team in the world, making it a pleasure to wake up in the morning and come to work.  To all those that are part of the Eskenzi family, we would like to say thank you for being with us on this journey and I hope we can enjoy plenty more happy and successful years to come!

At Eskenzi, we’re getting very excited for the upcoming European Cyber security Month in October, now less than a month away.  To kick off the month, we’ve organised Security Serious Week, sponsored by Mimecast and Netskope, to take place the week of the 3rd October.  The week is designed to inform, reward and inspire UK professionals into getting more serious about security and attract new talent to the industry.

On the first day, we’ve been given the Churchill room by the Department for Media Culture and Sport to host a conference that will bring together some of the country’s brightest minds in cyber security and cover topics such as how the UK’s top CISOs tackle security awareness, coping with the ever-changing legal landscape and how (and why) UK companies should be thinking like hackers.  For a full programme and to register for the event, you can visit here.

The second day will see the best individuals and teams the cyber security industry has to offer rewarded for all of their hard work at the Security Serious Unsung Heroes Awards during an informal ceremony in London that will compered by none other than the fabulous Clive Room. With categories such as Godfather of Security, CISO Supremo, Security Leader, Mobile Mogul and Cloud Security Superhero, around 20 awards will be given on the night.

Throughout the rest of the week, we will be hosting webinars for industry experts who have given up their time to provide fresh and interesting talks about the state of the cyber security industry, from securing the human factor and security vs. Productivity to securing the smart home and staying safe online.  There is sure to be a webinar to interest everyone, so do have a look and register now!

Cyber security has never been more important and has a huge part to play in the continuity and resiliency of our country as a whole.  We want Security Serious Week to not only help make the UK plc more security savvy, but also to recognise the people who work tirelessly in the background day after day in our critical infrastructure, transport, banks, shops, universities and public services to provide an incredible service to our national safety, yet often go unnoticed.

Of course, none of this would be possible without the companies that sponsored our work, so a very big thank you to gold sponsors Mimecast and Netskope, as well as AlienVault, gsk, Publicis Groupe, CrowdStrike, Lastline, Proofpoint, whiteCryption, Imperva, Acumin and Canon.


By Yvonne Eskenzi

Unsung Heroes Logo Final

Following on from the success of the first Security Serious Week last October, we will once again be organising another week to encourage UK plc to become more serious about security!  You can get involved in the following ways:

  1. Run an interesting webinar that will have broad appeal and encourage great awareness of a particular current topic – it cannot be self-serving or product orientated. We can host it for you for free via our IT security guru BrightTALK channel.  If you present a webinar we will promote it for you on the website and display your logo on the sponsor page.  The sooner we promote this the more people will register.
  2. Sponsor the Security Serious Conference at the Department of Culture, Media and Sports for as little as £2,750 which will get you a booth at the event, leads of the 70 participants and publicity around the entire promotion during the week in press releases and on the website with your logo prominently displayed.
  3. Sponsor the last category available at the Security Serious Unsung Heroes Awards for £2,700 which is the Cyber-Scribe – the best writer in the industry.
  4. Enter your staff, partners and customers into the new Security Serious Unsung Heroes Awards on 6th October – recognising all those who are heroes in our industry doing good behind the scenes – it’s free to enter and free to come along – no strings attached.  To enter go to https://www.securityserious.com/AwardNomination.aspx
  5. Promote Security Serious Week at the end of your emails, in your newsletters and basically everywhere to get people thinking more seriously about security. Could you push them on your newsletters, through social media etc.  Here are the links about the event:

www.securityserious.com and https://securityserious.com/AwardNomination.aspx


You can also find us on Twitter at @SecSerious  and @unsung_heroes16

  1. Logo is available from Katie@eskenzipr.com if you would like to use it.

If you’d like some further information please let me know!


Next April will see Eskenzi organise our 10th IT security analyst & CISO Forum on 24th and 25th April in London’s beautiful and Berkeley Hotel in Knightsbridge

It’s the perfect event to attend if you want to brief 80% of the top IT security analysts in the world who arrive in London for our two day event to meet with just 10 vendors who are flying high with new content, products and interesting plans for the future.  It’s a bit like speed-dating you get to tell the analysts all about your plans and afterwards they write about you!  On day two you get to brainstorm with over a dozen CISOs, who discuss their needs and desires, challenges and niggles in a small roundtable environment.  After the networking lunch we hold an afternoon of talks which are mainly panels of CISOs who present on a range of topical issues. As a vendor you are the host of the event and get to meet the 80 or so end users who attend the conference.  It’s a hugely popular event for all involved and open to just 10 vendors , therefore places are very limited – so if you’re interested please contact us – you’ll be eligible for our early bird discount of £1000 off the event until 20th September.

Why attend the IT security analyst & CISO Forum on 24th and 25th April

  1. Brief 80% of the world’s most influential analysts
  2. Learn what the CISOs really are worrying about and what products and solutions they really need, so that you can approach them afterwards with “just the perfect solution”.
  3. Meet with 80 potential customers and use it as a cost-effective lead generation event.

If you’d like to know more about the IT security analyst & CISO forum please contact Yvonne@eskenzipr.com or call 0207 183 2832.

Eskenzi is expanding and very excited to show you around our new offices which are based in Berkeley, 5 minutes across the Bay Bridge from San Francisco.  Stacey Matthews-Winn will work out of the gorgeous trendy offices with views of the San Francisco Bay and of course watch the fog go by!  Stacey joins Paula and Tila who are also on the West Coast and Jan who is based in Upstate New York.

Hello to Stacey in the new Eskenzi Office in Berkeley, California!


Stacey makes a perfect addition to the UK team as she used to be a client so knows exactly the fast pace we work to, managing to jump on rapid responses early morning and giving us almost 24 hour coverage which is ideal for making sure we never lose a breaking story opportunity.

Stacey is a PR and content marketing specialist with extensive experience creating compelling, data-driven campaigns for PR, print and web marketing—she’s a real asset for our clients. Her areas of expertise include cybersecurity, investor relations and content creation.

Having an office near Silicon Valley gives Eskenzi ample opportunities for networking with other cyber-security companies, and the ability to meet with our clients who are mainly based in the Valley.

Eskenzi now has over 25 clients across the globe with the majority based in Silicon Valley, however it’s fun to have clients based in China, Russia, Slovakia, Israel, Ireland, France, Germany and of course the UK.

It’s great that the majority of our clients are taking advantage of our various other bases to grow from, with many using us for PR not only in the US and UK but in France and Germany.

To have a chat about how we could help you expand your presence across the UK, US, France or Germany with PR, CISO meetings, analyst briefings then do email Yvonne@eskenzipr.com or call 44 0207 1832 832.

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