look out honey, 'cause I'm using technology

Open source Linux geek, infrequent artist, civil liberties activist, gently aging punk and practicing trouble maker


Phil Cryer, hacker and open source technologist at-large, is an active member of the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation) and a speaker at infosec conferences such as DEF CON, SecureWorld and Semafor-ISSA. He leads and moderates discussions about electronic rights and civil liberties while educating users about how their data is used by companies. With over fifteen years experience with Linux and open source software, he knows there's always another way to do it, and is constantly learning new techniques to solve technical challenges.

If he's not losing in a game of Uno with his family, he's listening to music while restoring vintage speakers, or painting his next masterpiece. He holds a bachelor's degree in fine arts, believes that imagination is more important than knowledge and is a practicing trouble maker.


In painting, Phil explores texture and contrast by constantly mixing disparate paints and materials. Working on dense, wood panels, he is continously exploring new ways of applying and using materials to create his art.


Slides from Phil's recent talks on online privacy and security are available for review and download on Slideshare.


During his stint in the biodiversity realm, Phil traveled the world helping other institutions use Linux and open source software to store and share historical biodiversity literature. His photos from the UK, Germany, France, China, Australia and Texas are on Flickr.


It's a collaborative, it's a lab, it's a colo, it's an address, it's, it's 526.cryer.us. lipsync, a project that aims to be a commandline version of Dr0pb0x for Linux and OS X users. left to chance, a seldom updated music blog that reveals a variety of musical styles. fak3r, Phil's long running blog, whose name is a sarcastic shot at the fallacy of internet privacy.

Professional summary

  • Experienced in systems architecture and server administration with a solid background in Linux server applications. Enjoys architecting and building new solutions utilizing open source software with a strong focus on security, sustainability and scalability.
  • Knowledgeable in all aspects of hardware installation, configuration, networking and backups. Emphasizes fail-over and high availability. Able to analyze project requirements and design proof-of-concept solutions incorporating software and hardware recommendations while promoting procedural guidelines and best practices.
  • Has worked as part of a distributed team, effectively demonstrating the self-motivation and discipline required in such an environment. Proposed successful solutions to make communication more reliable and secure for the team.
  • Over 10 years experience configuring, monitoring and administrating various server platforms within various flavors of Linux (Debian, Ubuntu, Red Hat Enterprise [RHEL], CentOS), Unix (Solaris, Open Solaris, AIX) and BSD (FreeBSD, OpenBSD, Apple OS X) all while working in full command line shells (BASH, ksh).
  • Reducing hardware costs by building distributed commodity clusters used for distributed storage, on-demand distributed computing and utilizing virtual machines for scalability and portability.
  • Extensive experience in configuration management, version control, build processes and build scripting. Knowledgeable in client and web based quality assurance across multiple platforms.
  • Has a personal interest in using and promoting Linux and open source software, with a desire to constantly expand and improve his skills.

Conferences, talks and papers

  • DEF CON 23 2015 (Las Vegas, NV)
  • Stampedecon 2015 (St. Louis, MO) - Conference Organizer
  • Anime Central (ACen) 2015 (Chicago, IL)
  • Pets Versus Cattle; Servers Evolved - Excite Talks, 2015 (St. Louis, MO) - Speaker
  • Daisho Con 2014 (Wisconsin Dells, WI)
  • DEF CON 22 2014 (Las Vegas, NV)
  • Stampedecon 2014 (St. Louis, MO) - Conference Organizer
  • InfowarCon 2014 (Nashville, TN) - Participant
  • Derbycon 3.0 2013 (Louisville, KY) - Speaker
  • DEF CON 21 2013 (Las Vegas, NV)
  • BSidesLV, July 2013 (Las Vegas, NV) - Speaker
  • StampedeCon 2013 (St. Louis, MO) - Organizer
  • St. Louis Linux User's Group, June 2013 (St. Louis, MO) - Speaker
  • SecureWorld 2012, September 2012 (St. Louis, MO) - Speaker
  • DEF CON 20 2012 (Las Vegas, NV)
  • BSidesLV, July 2012 (Las Vegas, NV)
  • StampedeCon 2012 (St. Louis, MO) - Organizer
  • Devops Days, March 2012 (Austin, TX) - Organizer
  • SEMAFOR, ISSA Security Conference 2012 (Warsaw, Poland) - Keynote Speaker
  • Life and Literature 2011 (Chicago, IL) - Attendee
  • ViBRANT, January 2011 (Paris, France) - Speaker
  • DEF CON 19 2011 (Las Vegas, NV) - Speaker
  • BSidesLV, July 2011 (Las Vegas, NV)
  • Data Hosting Infrastructure for Primary Biodiversity Data - BMC Informatics 2011 - Paper
  • Devops Days, March 2011 (Boston, MA) - Attendee
  • Cryer, Phil. "Build an Open Source Dropbox Clone." Hacker Monthly December 2010: 34-36 - Article
  • Atlas of Living Australia/BHL Meeting, Spring 2010 (Melbourne, Canberra, Australia) - Speaker
  • Biodiversity Heritage Library - China Launch Winter 2010 (Beijing, China) - Speaker
  • Strangeloop, Fall 2009 (St. Louis, MO) - Attendee
  • Taxonomy Database Working Group (TDWG) 2009 (Montpellier, France) - Speaker
  • Adoptions of Persistent Identifiers for Biodiversity Informatics - August 2009 - Paper
  • Taxonomy Database Working Group (TDWG) 2008 (Perth, Australia) - Speaker
  • Biodiversity Heritage Library - Architecture Planning 2009 (St. Louis, MO) - Speaker
  • eBiosphere Conference 2009 (London, United Kingdom) - Attendee
  • Biodiversity Heritage Library - Europe Launch 2009 (Berlin, Germany) - Attendee
  • Biodiversity Heritage Library - Technical Architecture 2009 (Woods Hole, MA) - Speaker
  • code4lib 2009 (Providence, RI) - Attendee
  • Nomina III 2008 (Margaret River, WA, Australia) - Attendee
  • Nomina II 2008 (Woods Hole, MA) - Attendee
  • DEF CON 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 (Las Vegas, NV) - Attendee, Speaker 2011
My slides and papers are available online