Ho-hum first date with Apple at Black Hat

The sparks didn't fly during the company's first-ever talk at the hacking confab. Apple security specialist Dallas De Atley is stylish and all, but CNET's Elinor Mills got the sense she'd heard his lines somewhere before.

Elinor Mills
Elinor Mills Former Staff Writer
Elinor Mills covers Internet security and privacy. She joined CNET News in 2005 after working as a foreign correspondent for Reuters in Portugal and writing for The Industry Standard, the IDG News Service and the Associated Press.
Elusive Apple security specialist Dallas De Atley teases Black Hat attendees with a primer on the security in iOS.
Elusive Apple security specialist Dallas De Atley teases Black Hat attendees with a mere primer on the security in iOS. iPhone photo by Elinor Mills/CNET

LAS VEGAS -- Apple today gave its first-ever talk at the Black Hat security conference, and it left me feeling like I'd had a really disappointing Match.com date with the hottest guy on the dating site.

The vaunted Apple decided to show up after snubbing the event for 15 years. As manager of the platform security team at Apple, Dallas De Atley seemed to have everything a Black Hat attendee could want -- popularity, experience, discriminating taste, a good sense of style, and a promising future. Playing hard to get only makes us want you more.

But 15 minutes in, I was ready for the check. Atley spent an hour doing a slide presentation on the architecture in iOS. There was nothing new from what's in the iOS Security white paper Apple released earlier this year.

Atley was in a hurry to leave afterward and didn't have a question-and-answer session as is customary. I thought maybe some private sweet talk from me could open him up, but he claimed he had an appointment and his entourage quickly shuffled him out the door. There was a universal sense of deflation in the room and we all went back to our lives.

I know it was too much to expect that this desire for him would be requited, and we should feel grateful he showed up at all. Let's see if we get a second date next year and if he's ready by then to really get acquainted.