The 2018 National Cyber Symposium kicks off at The Broadmoor hotel Oct. 8, focusing on “the best ways to handle cybersecurity in a constantly changing world — from corporate concerns to global threats.”

Hosted by the National Cybersecurity Center, the two-day symposium will include sessions on corporate cybersecurity, managing risk, executive oversight, cryptocurrency, blockchain technology, cyber compliance, state and federal defense strategies, global threats and workforce development.

Now in its second year, the symposium brings together industry, government, military, startups, educational institutions and think tanks with the aim of creating a cybersecurity and innovation ecosystem.

“I believe this is the premier cyber conference in the country,” NCC CEO Vance Brown said. “We have a phenomenal lineup of speakers, and we appreciate it when both the community and people from all over the country come to this event.”

Brown said it’s important to note the Cyber Symposium aims to reach non-technical professionals in business, government, education and military just as much as those with a technical background.

“I think it’s unique in the sense that we absolutely have tracks that are geared for people who are not cyber professionals,” he said. “They hear the word ‘cyber’ and they know it matters — they just don’t know why it matters.

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“Every leader needs to know something about cyber in today’s world — every one, whether you’re in the public sector or in the private sector,” Brown added. “It’s no longer going to be an excuse that ‘I just don’t know what you’re talking about.’ That’s not OK in this world, given that we believe it’s the greatest threat facing humanity today. …”

“Cyber needs to be the greatest priority for every organization today in terms of threat, so everybody needs to be informed and aware. I think they can go here and not feel any shame, because we assume that a lot of the participants do not have a lot of cyber background — but it’s time to get it. And now there’s a place for it — and we’re it.”

The lineup of almost 50 speakers includes General Michael Hayden, former director of the CIA and the NSA; Governor John Hickenlooper; Samantha Ravich, chair of the Transformative Cyber Innovation Lab with The Foundation for Defense of Democracies; Don Freese, FBI chief of Ops IT Enterprise Services; Mark Bristow, director of the Department of Homeland Security’s Hunt and Incident Response Team; elections expert Amber McReynolds; Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers; and Andre McGregor, director of security with Tanium.

Brown said he expects the National Cyber Symposium “will continue to grow — and it’ll be on the scale, I believe, of the Space Symposium in the not too distant future.”

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