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As a former CIA Spy, Professional Human Hacker and Social Engineer, Peter captivates his audience through stories regarding the Art of Deception and Manipulation.  

Expert On

  • Risk Management

  • Cyber Security

  • Safety/Security

  • Identity Theft

  • Social Media

Experience In

  • Consulting

  • Technology

  • Banking

  • Counterintelligence


Key speaking moments by Peter Warmka


Peter is a dynamic and frequently sought-after keynote speaker who consistently keeps audience members on the edge of their seats while wanting more.

At the core of Peter’s many presentations are good stories drawn from a diversity of real-life experiences. At times shocking and entertaining, Peter’s insightful stories reveal the human side of espionage from the perspective of both the “hunter” and the “target.” He effectively segues into how ordinary people easily and frequently fall prey to human hacking allowing today’s threat actors to manipulate them into undertaking actions that can be detrimental to them and/or the organization they work for.  

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His approach to cybersecurity risk management and data protection is unique to the industry and applicable to everyone, especially those actively using social media as a means of communication. His actionable tips are incredibly effective and easy to apply, empowering attendees to take back control over their security and privacy.


"Frightening yet enlightening,"

David Schwartz

President & CEO



Peter Warmka is a former Senior Intelligence Officer with the CIA having over 20 years of experience in breaching the security of target organizations overseas in pursuit of foreign intelligence requirements. His area of expertise, known as human hacking or social engineering, focused on the identification, assessment, and manipulation of key insiders to facilitate the breach. Such targets included the inner circles of senior government leaders, research institutions, terrorist groups, organized criminal groups, and entities involved in proliferation. In addition to his own targeting initiatives, Peter served as a senior manager of complex operational platforms where he mentored junior intelligence officers on their operations.  


Following his retirement from public service, Peter became obsessed with the growing incidents of data breaches and the fact that over 90 percent of them are initiated through some form of human hacking. Leveraging his area of expertise, he decided to get back into the fight by founding the Orlando-based firm Counterintelligence Institute. Today, his passion and mission are assisting city, state, and federal government entities, non-profits, academic institutions, private companies, and individuals in safeguarding their sensitive proprietary and personal data. At the core of Peter's approach to cybersecurity risk management is focusing on how to prevent external threat actors from manipulating employees into becoming insider threats.  


Peter's security awareness training programs prioritize proactive measures that organizations can implement to avoid falling victim to data breaches. However, as a licensed investigator specializing in cybercrime, Peter also assists clients who have fallen victim to financial fraud and extorsion.  


Peter is a frequent speaker having delivered keynote presentations to a variety of audiences as well as two TEDx talks. In addition to co-hosting The Security Guy and the CIA Spy, Peter has been a guest on numerous podcasts including RANE Insights, Cyberwire Human Hacking, Paul’s Security Weekly, Truth Lies and Coverups, and The Action Catalyst.


He has contributed to, and authored, numerous publications in English and Spanish on social engineering and the manipulation of insiders. His best-selling non-fiction book, Confessions of a CIA Spy - The Art of Human Hacking, was featured on Fox32. It is sought after by individuals, as well as by corporations providing it as a training resource for their personnel.


Peter previously served as an Adjunct Professor at Webster University's Masters in Cybersecurity Program. He expanded the course curriculum to include the growing threat of human hacking and established a social engineering “capture the flag” practical exercise. He assigned each student a U.S. corporate entity as their target. The purpose of the exercise was to collect as many flags as possible and develop a proposal for breaching the target entity’s security.  Students then provided a class briefing sharing their methodology, findings and lessons learned. Many students cited this course as among the best they have taken at the graduate level.


Peter also has over 10 years of experience as a curriculum designer and specialized tradecraft instructor for various special forces units of the Department of Defense. He finds mentoring those who risk their lives in service to their country as an honor and privilege.


Peter received a bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a master’s degree in International Business Management from Thunderbird School of Global Management. Mr. Warmka is a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE), a Certified Protection Professional (CPP) and Certified Instructor at CIA University (CIAU).


He and his wife live in Orlando. They have three children and five grandchildren. Peter loves archeology, exploration, and adventure. He has traveled to over 56 countries and speaks four languages.


Confessions of a CIA Spy - The Art of Human Hacking

Format:  20-90 minute keynote or training seminar.

Most successful data breaches are initiated by human hacking. Threat actors carefully select, assess, and manipulate key employees within a target organization who in turn become the “insider threat.” Advanced social engineering techniques are employed to effectively circumvent the policies, procedures and technological controls put in place to safeguard proprietary information, client data and sensitive personnel records.

For over 20 years of his career with the Central Intelligence Agency, Peter developed expertise in the identification, assessment, and manipulation of insiders to breach the security of target organizations in pursuit of high-value foreign intelligence. He now shares his insight to help protect organizations and employees against external threats.

This program is perfect for:
  • Senior and midlevel management

  • Chief security officers

  • Chief information security officers

  • Human resource managers

  • Public relations managers

The audience will leave with:
  • Why humans are so susceptible to human hacking

  • An understanding of threat actors and their objectives

  • How threat actors use social media platforms to identify and assess employees as potential insider candidates

  • How insider motivations and vulnerabilities are leveraged into the design and execution of advanced social engineering techniques including Spear Phishing, Smishing, Vishing and Face-to-Face approaches

  • The evolution and impact of deepfake technology in human hacking schemes

  • Three key actionable tips to prevent falling victim to human hacking

Social Engineering Fraud - Identifying Threats and Best Practices

Format: 8-hour workshop comprised of lectures, facilitated discussions and practical exercises

Today organizations, as well as individuals, are increasingly falling victim to a variety of threat actors who conduct human hacking, also known as social engineering fraud, to steal sensitive proprietary and personal information and/or execute lucrative financial extorsion schemes.  This methodology focuses on manipulating human behavior to undertake actions that will circumvent the policies, procedures and technological controls put in place to safeguard information and financial assets.  As a result, individual victims can fall victim to identity theft while organizations can end up suffering considerable financial and operational losses, at times leading to the closure of the business.  


This interactive workshop is led by Peter Warmka, a former CIA intelligence officer who spent over two decades designing and refining human hacking techniques to breach the security of target organizations overseas.  He now helps organizations safeguard their assets from a variety of threat actors including organized criminal groups, lone fraudsters, industrial competitors and foreign state actors. 

Key areas for discussion include:
  • Understanding the magnitude and impact of data breaches

  • Who are the threat actors and what are their objectives in targeting your organization

  • The sources of publicly available information which may identify exploitable vulnerabilities 

  • How key insider employees are identified as potential candidates 

  • How candidates are assessed based on their social media profiles and online interactions

  • The Art of Elicitation

  • Trust and social engineering influence techniques

  • Spear Phishing through email and fake social media personas

  • Smishing through text messages

  • Vishing through live telephone conversations using caller ID spoofing and deepfake audio

  • Face-to-face interactions 

  • Best practices to mitigate the risk of falling victim to social engineering fraud

This program is well suited for:
  • Internal employee training 

  • Professional associations seeking CPE training for members maintaining certifications such as the CFE, CPP  

C-Suite: Insights Into Cybersecurity Risk Management

Format: 20-90 minute keynote or training seminar.

The prospect of their organization suffering a devastating data breach is becoming a growing concern among C-Suite executives worldwide. Such breaches are conducted by a variety of threat actors who design and execute increasingly more sophisticated attacks to steal information (proprietary, client data, customer records) or to conduct financial extorsion in the form of ransomware or business email compromise (BEC). Such attacks can lead to a significant loss in operations and even force the enterprise out of business. C-Suite executives can no longer view security, whether physical or cyber, as a cost accounting item, but rather, as an investment in people, processes and technologies.  


In this session, Peter will leverage his expertise as a former intelligence officer, to help attendees understand the mindset of threat actors and the methodologies they use to turn employees into insider threats.  He will then provide tips on how the C-Suite can lead and foster a successful transformation of the organization's security awareness culture at all levels.  The ultimate goal is to harden the security of enterprise forcing threat actors to move onto softer targets.  

This program is perfect for:
  • Chief Executive Officers

  • Chief Financial Officers

  • Chief Operations Officers

  • Chief Information Officers

  • Chief Security Officers

  • General Council

  • Board Members

The audience will leave with:
  • Understanding who are the external threat actors and what are their objectives

  • Methodologies used to design and execute a variety of attacks

  • Best practices incorporated into policies and procedures greatly diminishing successful attacks

  • Creating a security awareness culture throughout all levels of the enterprise

Deepfake Technology - Fraudster's Paradise

Format: 20-90 minute keynote or training session

Technology is neither good nor evil.  Its impact on society depends upon the intentions of the beholder.  Since its inception in 2017, the use of synthetic media to create deepfakes is evolving at an explosive rate.  While proponents of such technology enthusiastically embrace numerous applications for the benefit of humankind, its use by fraudsters has already resulted in several successful multi-million dollar fraud schemes. 


Leveraging his expertise as a human hacker, Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) and cybercrime investigator, Peter will demonstrate how deepfakes can easily be incorporated into advanced social engineering schemes.  

This program is perfect for:
  • Employees responsible for fraud prevention and detection

  • Officials responsible for enterprise security

  • Those responsible for public relations and monitoring of online reputation

  • Business intelligence analysts 

The audience will leave with:
  • An understanding of the evolution of deepfake technology

  • Beneficial applications for society

  • How deepfakes are used for deception to include financial fraud, manipulation of public opinion and reputational damage

  • What tools are available for the detection of deepfakes

  • Examples of how enterprises can establish verification and authentication procedures to mitigate deepfake threats

Unmasking Deception in Online Dating and Social Media Profiles

Format: 20-90 minute keynote or workshop.

The rampant spread of fake online dating and social media profiles has become a growing epidemic within our virtual world.   They are quickly and easily created by malicious predators to hide their true identity while creating commonalities with the target of their deception to create trust.   Victims include young women being lured into human trafficking,  lonely hearts losing their bank accounts to romance scams, those drawn into investment schemes, identity theft victims and those unwittingly manipulated into facilitating a data breach of the organizations which they work for. 


Peter's passion for this topic originated when he discovered that his teenage daughter was being emotionally groomed by a predator whom she met while on an online dating app.  His mission is to create an awareness of online fake personas and how potential victims can quickly utilize tools to validate their authenticity or unmask their deception.

This program is perfect for:
  • Anyone using online dating applications

  • Those approached on social media platforms by someone they do not personally know

  • Those interested in protecting their children, aging parents or other loved ones from being naively drawn into online fraud

The audience will leave with:
  • Understanding the multitude of schemes where fake profiles can be utilized to target victims

  • The methodologies utilized by predators to create convincing fake profiles

  • Actionable tips for analyzing and vetting profiles

  • What to do when you discover that you have entered into a dialogue with a threat actor 

Taking Back Control Over Your Identity and Privacy

Format: 20-90 minute keynote or training session.

In this era of big data expansion, many people reluctantly relinquish control over their privacy allowing their identity to be transformed into a marketable binary code.  While their personal information may be used to enhance a company's efficiency in marketing products and services,  it can also be exploited by criminals and other threat actors for identity theft leading to devastating consequences for its victims. In 2021 alone, over 1.5 million Americans suffered identity theft resulting in 52 billion dollars in reported losses.   Can you afford to become part of that statistic?


Few people realize that there are many ways they can effectively take back control over their privacy by incorporating specific settings on a variety of online applications in addition to exercising care in what they post on their social media platforms.   


Leveraging his expertise as a former CIA intelligence officer and private investigator, Peter will clearly illustrate the evolution of victims who had to react to identity theft instead of proactively incorporating best practices that would have prevented them from ever happening in the first place.   

This program is perfect for:
  • Individuals who are concerned about their loss of privacy and digital security 

  • Those wanting to take back control over their identity and privacy 

The audience will leave with:
  • Understanding how big data is collected and what are its many applications 

  • Identification of threat actors and how they utilize this information for identity theft

  • Specific procedures for changing privacy control settings on major online applications

  • Numerous resource guides (PDF) 

Espionage 101 for International Business Travelers and Their Families

Format: 20-90 minute keynote or training seminar.

U.S. Business executives and their families frequently become targets of opportunity for state intelligence services, industrial competitors, and organized criminal groups when they travel overseas to high CI threat environments.   Managing their public profile, deciding where to stay, whom to trust and criteria for the media devices they carry are a few of the many considerations. Mishaps can lead to damage to personnel reputations, financial extorsion, and/or devastating financial consequences for their firms.  

As a former intelligence officer with the CIA who has traveled to over 56 countries, Peter is well versed in the methodologies utilized by these threat actors to compromise corporate executives who are typically more focused on physical security over privacy, human hacking operations, and data protection.  He shares and analyzes numerous case studies along with the lessons painfully learned by stakeholders.  

This program is perfect for:
  • Mid-level to senior executives from all industries who travel overseas on behalf of their company

  • Executives and family members relocating overseas

  • Chief of security

  • Those responsible for the design and management of travel plans 

The audience will leave with:
  • What makes business travelers high-priority targets

  • How to manage your profile before and during travel

  • Understanding cultural differences and loss of legal protection 

  • How family members can help protect or endanger you 

  • How to minimize opportunities for electronic data collection

  • How to protect yourself from blackmail and extorsion schemes


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