Frequently asked questions
In 2023 there are 3 ticket types. A very limited VIP “extreme/ultimate” badge, a general digital badge (redeems a electronic badge), and analog tickets (redeems a plastic badge) All ticket types grant access to all Thursday & Friday presentation tracks, interaction with villages, and contests/content found at the event.
We also provide discounts for the general digital and analog badge types for students and bulk purchases. Please contact us for additional information.
We have your ticket purchase on record. You may redeem and pickup your badges and/or pre-ordered merchandising at the registration desk during our event.
Yes, with some conditions: You’ll need to contact us less than 3 weeks prior to the event to transfer the ticket. We may need to verify your information before confirming the ticket transfer. We may require you to prove you are the owner of the ticket via order information or original email. In addition may require onsite verification such as showing an ID at the door to grant entry. Each ticket is redeemed at registration during our event. We reserve the right to deny any requests for any reason.
No, we have a strict no-refund policy, however we would be happy to help you find an eager student willing to attend on your behalf as a donation.
Note we have invoked a one-time exception: If you have a 2020 or 2021 ticket canceled by the pandemic, we will be rolling most paid 2020 & 2021 tickets purchased before November 1, 2021 into “Forever” tickets. Once you commit to redeeming those tickets for future events, that ticket is now void.
Our strict no-refund policy states, “Any and all payments made to CypherCon are not refundable for any reason, including, without limitation, failure to use credentials due to illness, change in attendance availability, acts of God, travel-related problems, acts of terrorism, government shutdowns of any kind, loss of employment and/or duplicate purchases.” unless our event insurance gets activated and contributes to reimbursement. We also reserve the right to revoke tickets and access to the event for any reason. So, basically behave and be respectful.
Any attempts to reverse or block a submitted transaction before contacting us will result in a ban from all future events and potentially neighboring events.
We will help you refund your order, however we get hit with a processing fee of 2.9%+30c, if it was our system’s fault, we’ll refund that. If the fault is on your side, we ask you pay this processing fee as our payment processor does not refund that to us.
CypherCon is the largest technology conference in the state and an annual hacker conference based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. We enjoy puzzles, mystery, and discovery. We pride ourselves with a unique culture that focuses heavily on retro-futuristic 70s,80s,90s,00s hacker culture blending the art of dancing between fantasy and reality. Our core event consists of several tracks of speakers about computer- and hacking-related subjects, as well as cyber-security challenges and competitions. In addition we publish puzzles made by the community in unique story worlds. Lastly, we offer a blank canvas for hacker specializations ran by volunteers called villages.
Presentations topics include Cyphers, Hacking, Information Security, Cryptography, Forensics, and other hacker, cypherpunk, and cyberpunk oriented topics. We also offer presentations for career development, security leadership, and risk.
Our 2023 event had about 1500 attendees. We cancelled 2020 & 2021 due to the pandemic.
CypherCon will be held April 4-5, 2024 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin at the Baird Conference Center (Formerly Wisconsin Center)
Thursday: Noon-9:00PM (Afterparty 9pm-2am +/-)
The event aims to lead, convene, and connect local and neighboring hacker and information security friends for an open discussion on strong cryptography, become advocacy outlet for privacy, and strive for the betterment of education of the general public in a diligent, loyal, honest manner, and not knowingly be part of any illegal or improper activities. We will accomplish this by being the interchange of knowledge and ideas, advancing the industry forward, while never forgetting our cultural hacker past.
Years 1-5 has been about immediacy & living in this exact moment.
Years 6-10 is about different paths and choices one can make in life. The CypherCon 7 / 2024 theme is Casino Heist.
Our event is a blank canvas. Beyond presentations, puzzles, and contests. Our conference format allows for the community of volunteers to create specialized areas called villages. These villages may offer displays, interesting talks, informal discussions, socializing, challenges, contests, and competitions. CypherCon may seem like it’s purely security technology and hacking as the primary purpose of the con however the community defines what CypherCon shifts into, such as emerging hacker related topics. Examples may include attendees picking locks, hacking the badge, playing capture the flag, or discovering interesting presentation topics beyond hacking such as mushroom cultivation or dark skies.
Presentations are very diverse, some examples include: decoding cypher puzzles, corporate and network security, privacy, personal rights and freedoms, new technologies, modern exploit techniques, security philosophy, hardware hacking, forensics, reverse engineering, protocol analysis, cryptographic algorithms. The community can even go beyond the standard hacker themes with mushroom cultivation and dark skies. Expect a blank canvas and all-around security and cypher topics with added comedic ‘hacker’ motifs. Lastly, our event is flexible and for anyone, you never have to touch a computer, and can relax and socialize with the community.
Everyone is welcome to CypherCon. CypherCon is a blank canvas shaped by the community. If you are reading this, YOU are this community! Looking forward to meeting you.
A hacker is anyone who is curious and creative and seeks to understand how things work. Ultimately, many people have different characterizations of what a ‘hacker’ is, you can express however and as whomever you wish to be.
Come learn with us, see interesting things, and participate!
*Anyone in good standing with CypherCon and/or the community-at-large may attend. The organizer has the right to deny access or remove anyone for any reason from the event.
CypherCon has no age limits. Adults are ultimately responsible to decide if this community is appropriate for their children. Feel free to contact us for further details in your discussion process.
We comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a Federal civil rights law designed to protect persons with disabilities by prohibiting discrimination in employment (Title I), ensuring equal access to services of state and local governments (Title II), and ensuring equal access to “places of public accommodations” (12 categories of private businesses and/or non-profit organizations) (Title III). ADA compliance is not only an issue for employers in hiring decisions, it’s also important to consider when planning conferences and meetings.
If you have a special request, be it a mobility, visual, or hearing impairment, we would be happy to assist. Please contact us at least one month prior to the event to give us ample time to comply.
To guarantee the independent nature of the conference, CypherCon has always had the following sponsorship guidelines:
- Sponsors cannot affect the agenda
- Sponsorship will not guarantee (nor prevent) a presentation slot
- Zero tolerance for presentations that focus on marketing or directly promoting a commercial product
CypherCon has NEVER offered attendee lists to sponsors. We value your privacy.
We recommend staying at the Hilton or Hyatt hotel connected to the conference venue.
Please reach out if you have any questions or concerns regarding hotel options.
If you are looking for a premium place to stay. We recommend the historic hotel downtown Milwaukee called The Pfister Hotel. The Pfister Hotel happened to be the venue for our first year.
We value your privacy. Privacy is a core expectation for these conferences. For many of us we use handles instead of our real names. We honestly try our best to protect your information. We do not provide sponsors with attendee lists. We may say in general what companies attend. We also want you to be informed and involved so we may email you occasionally about the event. We will not sell your information to third parties. That would be super weird anyway.
Photos and video may be taken at the event by authorized individuals wearing press badges and approved by CypherCon leadership.
Still Worried? We can figure something out. Contact us.
No, You don’t need therapy before CypherCon! Please save it for after.