Security researcher Emily Mitchell has told Waypoint, the gaming vertical of Vice, that she was asked by recruiters of Blizzard Entertainment if she 'liked being penetrated' at a job fair in August 2015. The job fair took place in Las Vegas as part of a cybersecurity conference called Black Hat 2015.
At the job fair, Blizzard had set up a booth since the developer was a sponsor of a Black Hat 2015, and Mitchell, seeking a job in her field of security research, approached the booth to see what positions, if any, were available. At the time, Mitchell was wearing a shirt made by cybersecurity company SecureState that said 'Penetration Expert' on the front, a reference to 'penetration testing' or 'pentesting' being a commonly used term for a security audit in the cybersecurity industry.
Mitchell was asked if she was lost, if she was there with her boyfriend, and if she even knew what pentesting was before being asked how often she was penetrated, when was the most recent time she was penetrated, and if she enjoyed being penetrated.
"I didn't feel comfortable saying anything to anyone at the time because I was a single mom who needed a job, and I didn't want to do anything that may have jeopardized my chances of landing a new job," Mitchell explained to Waypoint regarding why she hadn't reported the event to Black Hat staff or come forward about the experience at a time closer to the occurrence of the event itself.
Waypoint also reported that the event resulted in a negative relationship with a company in which Mitchell was an executive a few years later due to the way she was treated.
Mitchell's story was made public on July 30, shortly after Blizzard was sued by the state of CA for a 'frat boy' culture citing sexual harassment, misogyny, and gender discrimination.