Rocco G. Calvi

Executive Director
Digital Security Research Centre

Based in the United Arab Emirates, Rocco G. Calvi is the Executive Director at  Digital Security Research Centre at the Technology Innovation Institute. Leading a hub of scientists and engineers from around the globe, his objective is to improve vulnerability identification and self-healing capabilities at speed and scale for the devices we use daily – from the internet of things to critical systems.

Prior to this, Rocco was the director of Digital14’s Software Lab for 4 years. He was tasked with building a computer security software lab comprised of world-class experts that research, test, and validate strategies to anticipate and respond to tomorrow’s threats. This involved overseeing all testing for the ultra-secure smartphone KATIM before it went to market. Additionally, Rocco initiated and led the zero-day vulnerability-coordinated disclosure program – improving the software security of such tech giants as Cisco Systems, Sony, and Hewlett-Packard.

For 4 years, he was also the managing director of a mobile application company in Australia and worked as an independent researcher, reporting critical zero-day vulnerabilities to affected vendors in their widely-used products (such as Microsoft Office Suite, VideoLAN VLC media player, and IBM Personal Communications). Rocco also made significant contributions to popular open-source security tools, such as the Metasploit Project, which aids in penetration testing and intrusion detection system signature development.

A hands-on leader, Rocco has a strong track record of solving vital software security challenges through strategic decision-making and tactical execution. Throughout his professional career, he has improved the security posture of governments and Fortune 500 companies in the UAE, Australia, and the United States. He possesses cross-industry experience in healthcare, gaming, manufacturing, telecommunications, and energy and utilities.

He has written technical articles, features in quarterly security reports and blogs, appeared in YouTube videos, been quoted by news outlets in the Middle East, distributed CTF awards at security conferences, was acknowledged for discovering critical security vulnerabilities in industrial control in the Homeland Security ICS-CERT July/August 2016, and taught computer security to students.