Posted on April 14, 2014 by Shopify API


April 15th, 2014

March’s Art of Escape was all about new faces, strange places, and facing unexpected obstacles with exceptional results. The first major change was staff-related: Rift Recon was thrilled to welcome Brian O’Shea to the team as a Trainer and Senior Intelligence Advisor. Brian brings over twenty years of intelligence and tactical risk experience to the team and proved to be an engaging Art of Escape instructor. He put an entirely new spin on using social engineering and tactical intelligence collection to gain valuable supplies and intelligence, and had a blast doing it! You can read more about Brian in the coming days, when Rift releases a “Trainer Spotlight” piece on him.

Now, onto the good stuff. For the first time, the majority of our participants hailed from local tech companies, undoubtedly due to the steady San Francisco designer, developer, and programmer boom. Despite their overall lack of prior escape and evasion training, they were strong-willed, creative, and resourceful. This was definitely the most connective class we’ve had yet. It was clear from Day One that the students were both incredibly forthcoming and receptive. Combined with Brian and Eric’s high-energy interactive teaching style, the first two days of class flew by. The students organically formed tight bonds with one another, bonds that proved fortuitous during Saturday’s highly-anticipated Field Training Exercise (FTX).

Here’s a fun game: See if you can spot the difference(s) between the Pre-FTX class photo……


……and the Post-FTX class photo! (The winner gets a 15% discount to be used throughout our entire product catalog! Hint: Look for changes in physical characteristics.)


This month’s FTX fell on the foulest of days, in the midst of a brutal, windy downpour. Not to be deterred, the students barreled off into the city after being thoroughly searched and relentlessly interrogated. Rift had applied the suggestions of former students and increased the intensity of their interrogation scenario for March’s Art of Escape. Participants were surprised by multiple unfamiliar captors, new restraint techniques, and psychological stressors. They navigated the situation like pros, and then were off on foot to face the freezing rain.

A highlight of the day involved an elaborate manhunt in the Ferry Building, where Rift Recon staff (spies) had been planted to identify students, track their movements using audio and video equipment without being detected, and swiftly apprehend them. This resulted in tons of quality footage of acutely acquired social engineering tactics, as well as more than one frenzied chase through the crowd. March’s Art of Escape students proved to have some of the most elaborate disguises we’d ever seen, and even with numerous sets of eyes searching for them, they managed to avoid detection more often than not. They also completed all of the FTX checkpoints in record time, leading us to assume that even more must be needed! (Watch out, future participants!) At the end of the day, our students were exhausted and soaking wet with both rain and exertion, yet their smiles stretched ear-to-ear. Another job well done!

- Arianna Travaglini
Arianna Travaglini is an Executive Assistant at Rift Recon

Posted in artofescape, riftrecon, san francisco

AFTER ACTION REPORT: January’s Art of Escape

Posted on February 21, 2014 by Shopify API

AFTER ACTION REPORT: January’s Art of Escape

By now, you’ve certainly heard about Rift Recon’s most successful mission to date: the debut of our Art of Escape training in January. We ran our participants through numerous tutorials, tests, and tribulations, and though they emerged in one piece, smiling for the camera at their “graduation,” it definitely wasn’t a cake walk!

Our students came from a diverse array of backgrounds and professions, but they expressed multiple similarities. For instance, most students excelled at learning to escape from physical bonds, while a like majority found the most challenging part of the training to be acquiring and executing various lock picking techniques. Participants also found themselves having to think outside the box when presented with field exercises that utilized over half a dozen checkpoints, all while keeping to a strict time frame. Some students were surprised to discover that they had to rely on their peers to complete lessons and obstacles, being arbitrarily paired up with one another and taught skills that relied just as much on teamwork as they did individual prowess.

We received some incredible constructive feedback from our trainees after graduation, and as a result of their insightful observations we’re considering adding a few new components to the schedule. Each participant lent unique knowledge and dimension to the training, and we’re looking forward to increasing the quality, comprehensiveness, and efficiency of each month’s Art of Escape with their continued support.

The next Art of Escape training will be held from Thursday February 27th - Saturday March 1st at The San Francisco Armory. Spots are still available! For registration information, visit:

-Arianna Travaglini
Arianna is a Staff Administrator at Rift Recon.

Posted in art of escape, riftrecon, tripleaughtdesign

Bourbon heists, spies, a suitcase stuffed with $1.7 million and other stories from the Rift

Posted on December 04, 2013 by

Here’s a recap of our favorite news stories recently featured in the Rift Recon newsletter:

Drug Traffickers Hacked Major Shipping Port Tracking System
The scheme sounds like a work of near science fiction. But police in the Netherlands and Belgium insist it’s true, and say they have the evidence to prove it: two tons of cocaine and heroin, a machine gun, a suitcase stuffed with $1.7 million, and hard drive cases turned into hacking devices.

Kentucky’s Case of the Missing Bourbon
America’s decade-old romance with Kentucky bourbon, a drink formerly as plebeian as a Chevrolet, has come to this: high-end bar chefs and foodies everywhere have been abuzz since 65 cases of Pappy Van Winkle, one of the nation’s most expensive and sought-after bourbons, disappeared from a warehouse here.

Thieves, Spies, and Silicon Valley Startups a Cautionary Tail
Last Christmas Eve, a man broke into Adara Networks’ San Jose headquarters, using copies of both physical and electronic keys. He seemed to know exactly what he was looking for. The thief left rows of desks untouched as he cruised toward the lab holding the source code for Adara’s proprietary data-center networking software. Fortunately for Adara, he triggered an alarm on the lab door and fled.

How The Chinese Are Hacking Us Through Our Limos
Kevin Mandia, CEO of the cybersecurity company Mandiant, takes a lot of limo rides. Normally, his limo company emails him PDF copies of his invoices after every trip. Recently, though, something changed. “I’ve been receiving PDF invoices not from them, but from an [advanced hacking] group back in China; that’s awesome,” said Mandia in D.C. recently. He only caught the attack when the hackers sent receipts on days when he hadn’t used the car service. “I forwarded them to our security service, and they said, ‘Yup, that’s got a [malicious] payload.’”

Contactless payments - researcher intercepts card data from over a meter away

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to intercept contactless card and NFC smartphone payment passwords at distances of up to 90cm using a backpack, a shopping cart, and a small antenna. Mission: Impossible? Apparently not, according to a paper published by the Institute of Engineering and Technology on Tuesday.

For more real-life smash and grab stories, break into the Rift Recon Newsletter Archives or sign up for our semi-seekly list with the form in the left-hand sidebar. Got a tip on a hot story? Send it to [email protected].

Posted in newsletter, riftrecon

We're hiring

Posted on November 21, 2013 by

Rift Recon is hiring and we’re pretty sure some of the people reading this post will be a perfect fit.


All in a days work

We’re based in San Francisco and have primary team members in different parts of the US. Rift is growing fast and we’re about to introduce a range of new retail products and services. Our new space for training - in partnership and conjunction with Triple Aught Design - will be opening in San Francisco next month. We’re hiring immediately.

We’re looking for:

* Fulfillment staff
* Sales specialists
* Designers and engineers
* Trainers

If you’re interested in finding out more, drop us a line: staff @ RiftRecon . com

See also:

Thanks for your time, everyone.

-Eric Michaud and the Rift Recon team

Posted in hiring, riftrecon

Introducing the 7&8 Pin Tubular Pick - Now Included With Red Team Kit Toolset

Posted on October 02, 2013 by

The 7&8 Pin Tubular Pick is a sweet tool: Instead of skipping over tubular locks (which we encounter fairly common in the field) during an audit, picking becomes a simple task.


Lighten your loadout. With the 7&8 Pin Tubular Pick you no longer need to carry two devices. Now cabinets, soda machines, arcade cabinets, a variety of access control system enclosures and much more are quick and easy to defeat with just a little practice.
The tool is compact, it allows you to swap between the two most common pinnings in the field, and it can be smartly hidden in various places. It also fits into most pockets in our Red Team Kit bag (in fact, the 7&8 Pin Tubular Pick is now part of the Red Team Kit toolset).


To ensure flawless operation, users should disassemble the tool and wipe down the tangs from time to time. Extend the life of your 7&8 Pin Tubular Pick by storing it in a cool dry place between uses and trainings.

As an added bonus to our existing customers of the Red Team Kit we just sent out this and a few other awesome tools in the mail free of charge because we love our customers so much.

-Rift Recon Team

Posted in riftrecon, rtk, tubular pick

Introducing: The Rift Recon Dossier

Posted on September 19, 2013 by

We’re extremely pleased with the team here has accomplished in the first six weeks since Rift’s official launch. A partnership with ExploitHub, our online store is open and stocked, we’re running fast with a newsletter every week, and we put new products online every chance we get… Now we get to announce the release the first of our Rift Recon Kit Dossiers.

When you get a Rift Recon product or service, we believe it shouldn’t be the end of the transaction, but the beginning of something cool. When we ship you a product we look forward to your emails, tweets, or calls with questions, comments or wish list requests. Support is everything. We work in this industry, too - so we’re always going to make sure you get the most out of Rift’s services and gear you get so you’re always prepared.

So check out our new Rift Recon Kit Dossier.

Each tool has an accompanying dossier detailing what you need to know about each tool and tool class: why we chose each item, its detailed uses, and a clear guide to using the tool effectively - with step-by-step illustrations.


Posted in dossier, riftrecon, underthedoortool, utdt

Announcing the Rift Recon Online Shop + New Tools

Posted on August 29, 2013 by Shopify API


Last night - while you were sleeping - the Rift Recon Store went live.

After processing our first orders this morning, we’re excited to announce that the launch is now official: the Rift Recon Store offers the highest quality physical security and penetration testing products and kits, and trainings, available anywhere.

The Rift Recon Store will be adding new products every week.

Get individual tools you can’t find anywhere else (like the Under The Door Tool), Rift Recon kits (including the original Red Team Kit) and exclusive, expertly selected collections (such as Rift’s own Bump Key Set) - plus educational documentation, trainings, and more.

We’re thrilled to have made some great partnerships with brilliant toolmakers, trainers and engineers - and this makes us uniquely able to offer you top-shelf gear at affordable prices. We know your work is serious, and so are we. This isn’t playtime, and you no longer have to settle for lower quality knockoffs, frustrating checkout experiences, or unresponsive merchants. Don’t miss our sibling retail shop at Exploit Hub, whose unique Hardware suite is curated and verified by Rift Recon.

Exploit Hub Hardware is also growing rapidly, and it’s where you’ll find items like the sweet Nuand bladeRF, the Pwnie Express Pwn Plug Elite, plus Rift gear - and is the only place you can buy it all with Bitcoin. So, click by our new shop and see why our first customer called it “like an iTunes app store for physical security.” We’re so proud of our team!

Keep up with our ongoing product releases, training announcements, and more with the Rift Recon Weekly Newsletter.


-The Rift Recon Team

Posted in riftrecon, rtk, rtkmini, shop

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