Thursday, September 6, 2012

Another way to enhance your tech skills: Cyber Challenges

In the past year, I've been lucky enough to participate in three or four Cyber Challenge competitions including MDC3 (2011 and now 2012), the Global CyberLympics, and DC3.


The MDC3 is a competition with three levels of entry:
  1. High School
  2. Collegiate
  3. Professional
From the website:
What is the Challenge?
Teams within each level will battle it out in a series of “hackathons”—exciting, real-world cybersecurity games that put their critical thinking skills to the ultimate test.
Online qualification rounds will test each team’s cyber defense skills, including their ability to harden systems against vulnerabilities, maintain critical services, and communicate timely and effectively. As teams advance, the qualification rounds will increase in complexity and intensity.
The finals—to be hosted at CyberMaryland 2012—will include a Capture the Flag/King of the Hill variation which introduces more exercise problems as the game progresses.
There are three qualifying rounds: forensics, attacking, and defense.  The final round is a capture the flag competition.

Global CyberLympics

The CyberLympics is another competition very similar to the MDC3, since they both use the same CyberNEXS system from SAIC.  There are three rounds before finals, only instead of being limited regionally, the teams compete from around the globe (APAC, EMEA, and Americas).


DC3 is a forensics-focused challenge where they post problems falling into several levels of difficulty.  The goal is to find information and report it along with the methodology you used to retrieve the information.

I'm beginning to collect all other cyber challenges I run across here:  I think it'd be great to share resources for the challenges themselves as well as any tools used, so hit me up for tips and expect the same in return.

I'll be posting more challenges as I find them as well as discussions of the methodology used to resolve them (if I'm successful).  Don't worry, though.  For those that love the challenge, I won't give too much away.

Happy Hacking!