Mobile security and virtualisation are set to top the agenda at this week's semi-annual BlueHat conference, held at Microsoft's Redmond headquarters.

The conference will give Microsoft engineers and executives a chance to hear first-hand reports on the latest in computer security research. This will be Microsoft's sixth BlueHat conference, since it introduced the event in early 2005.

This year, representatives from companies such as Symantec, 3Com's TippingPoint division, and Sourcefire will speak on topics ranging from embedded system security, software "fuzzing," and exploit creation.

"The BlueHat speakers, both leading external security researchers and internal Microsoft engineers, will pierce the security veil of virtualisation and process isolation," wrote Microsoft security group manager Andrew Cushman on the BlueHat blog. "Plus, we've got a couple of talks on Windows Mobile and more about automated exploit creation - this time using Metasploit."

There will also be a discussion of WabiSabiLabi's controversial exploit marketplace given by Roberto Preatoni, strategic director with the company, according to the preliminary agenda. Friday morning will be devoted to a discussion of mobile hacking tools and techniques and software virtualisation will be discussed later in the day.

Usually Microsoft says nothing about its BlueHat hacking conferences prior to the event, but this year the company pre-announced the confab, saying it wants to be a little more up-front about what's going on. "BlueHat is unique and still a closed door conference for MS product teams, but this year we will open up a little - with info about the conference before it starts and with more info made available during the conference," Cushman wrote.