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A Student-Hacker Showdown at the Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition

Article Description

Students faced off against experienced hackers at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition. The students' goal: lock down unfamiliar systems and secure their networks. The hackers' goal: to own the students' networks and steal important data. Seth Fogie witnessed this real-world competition and reports on its unexpected twists, turns, and even drama.

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The Rules

The rules were fairly simple — at least at first glance. Basically, the Red Team could do anything but hurt someone or perform a denial of service attack (network flood). The student teams were a bit restricted, with regard to changing IP addresses and messing with the infrastructure.

Communication was allowed between team members, but only the team leader could talk to the white cell members about problems, etc. The feds could be called over for an investigation and the Red Team was allowed to try to talk to the teams to put a social engineering twist on the games. Finally, all business objectives and administrative requests are sent to the CEO via email.

There are some other rules and regulations that are laid out in some detail (http://student.ccbcmd.edu/~cobrie12/ccdc/docs/
Mid_Atlantic_Regional_Team_Packet.pdf
). However, for the most part, the rules were fairly loose to allow some dynamics in the game.

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