Here’s another excellent article from Michele “@MrsYisWhy” Chubirka covering the benefits of Capture the Flag (CTF) competitions. If you are in college or early in your career I highly recommend participating in a few of these a year. Not only do CTFs increase your skills but they can easily distinguish you from your peers when heading out for that next job interview. And for more seasoned professionals CTFs offer a fun way to keep your technical skills sharp.
Among computer security professionals, there’s a popular competition known as Capture the Flag (CTF). You’ll often find them held at less conventional conferences such as Defcon, and at universities and infosec gatherings. Played in darkened rooms and stocked with enough hardware to put the Batcave to shame, these contests are teeming with elite practitioners seeking to dominate each other on a virtual playing field.
To an outsider, they might appear to be a primitive battle of egos, uber-nerds parading their specialized talents in a highly exclusive forum. However, these events are actually a critical element of the security professional’s development, helping to build and maintain skills essential to the protection of our institutions. In fact, CTFs increasingly are seen as a mainstream professional endeavor.
In most forms, CTF is based on the traditional physical competition, which has two territories with opposing teams, each seeking to “capture” the other team’s flag and return with it to their own territory. The cyber version becomes an exercise in protecting and attacking computer systems and networks, with participants divided into attackers (red) and defenders (blue).
Today’s post pic is from RocketEvents.ie.