2017 Technology Exchange

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Capture the Flag

Internet2 would like to thank Merit and the Michigan Cyber Range for facilitating and sponsoring the Capture the Flag event!

DURATION: 4-to-8 hours
SKILL LEVEL: Intermediate



Scheduling Note: Please plan to have breakfast in the conference food/beverage area before arriving for the game.  The activity will begin promptly at 7:30am to allow the facilitators to explain the ground rules and assign credentials.  You will not be required to remain in the room for the entire game.  Once you have credentials and understand the rules, you will be able to play the game anywhere in the hotel where you can access the conference wireless. This room will remain open throughout the game and the facilitators will be available to provide any technical assistance needed.  The player who has accumulated the most points throughout the day will be named the winner when game ends at 5:00pm.  You do not need to be present in the room to win.

Capture the Flag (CTF) is a challenge designed to cover the spectrum of cybersecurity. From Python scripting and web application hijacking to penetrating SCADA networks, reverse engineering and database hacking, the exercise challenges participants’ technical skills. Attendees also learn to become better defenders by using open source tools. 

Participants use open source tools to fire off live attacks on networked systems in real time. A self-paced exercise, the CTF is a means to assess individual skills across a broad range of systems.

Teams and individuals can play from any location in a complete CTF environment. This means that nobody can prevent another’s ability to capture a flag or achieve a challenge. User experience is augmented via live scoreboard and 3D visualization of the Alphaville environment. This is ideal for Capstone activity.

REQUIRED SKILLS: CTF participants should have basic computer skills, familiarity with the command line, understanding of IP addressing and DNS, familiarity with basic security concepts, problem solving skills, and resourcefulness. Participants will not know all the solutions to problems encountered in the CTF. The solutions will require research outside of the game.

NOTE: Participants are shown how to access and interact with the CTF environment. A proctor is onsite to solve technical problems with the system. No assistance in how to solve challenges is offered. All participants must hold intermediate-to-advanced cybersecurity and programming skills to succeed in the exercise!