A volunteer group is launching this month to provide a forum for free, open source documentation, tools and standards for Web application security.
The group, titled the Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP), will develop conferences, articles, papers and message forums, and will eventually be national. Currently, OWASP operates throughout the US, Europe and Asia.
The Melbourne chapter opens February 8 while the Sydney group was launched in November 2004.
Michael Silk, chapter leader of Melbourne OWASP, said the forums are an informal meeting place where people can learn from each other and talk about the latest technologies.
"There are few groups where we can sit and talk about recent ideas and latest technologies that are not specific to any corporate products," Silk said.
He said the difference between the OWASP meetings and vendor-orientated education nights is that the group wants to keep the numbers smaller to make it easier for people to exchange ideas.
"If you are sitting in a room with 200 people, it is hard for others to learn from what you know," he added.
The Melbourne chapter is looking for a sponsor to help with a regular meeting room (which Silks considers is likely to cost around $500 to $600 per meeting), but added the group will not back any vendor products.
For more information go to www.owasp.org/local/melbourne.html