National Cyber Cup by CYBER.ORG

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National Cyber Cup by CYBER.ORG

Pursue cybersecurity learning in a safe, fun, interactive environment. Teams of participants will be able to test themselves against others across the country through an engaging, virtual capture the flag (CTF) competition.

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Explore Cybersecurity
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The National Cyber Cup by CYBER.ORG is a free, jeopardy-style, CTF competition with a focus on cybersecurity themes and challenges. Participants will encounter a series of challenges designed to stretch their critical thinking skills to their limits, but in a fun way! By exploring reverse engineering, decryption, programming, computer networks and more cybersecurity topics, participants will gain hands-on experience in what cybersecurity professionals do every day.

 

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NCC Who

The NCC is for participants in grades 4-12 who are curious about cybersecurity. Participants are encouraged to compete in teams of up to four, but are able to compete as a team of 1 if necessary. Each team must be registered and led by an adult team sponsor who will oversee registration activities and relay all communications regarding the National Cyber Cup by CYBER.ORG.

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NCC What

The National Cyber Cup by CYBER.ORG will be a three-day, web-based competition in the format of a Jeopardy-style Capture the Flag (CTF). Challenges will be open for teams to solve for the entirety of the three days, and participants can view team scores as they change in real time. After the challenges close, the judges will review the final scores to confirm the winning team.

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NCC Why

The demand for cybersecurity professionals is becoming more urgent by the day. CYBER.ORG believes the best way to fill the workforce gap is to raise awareness and prepare the nation's youth for cybersecurity careers. This competition is an opportunity for a gamified cybersecurity experience full of fun, interesting challenges designed to push them to their limits.

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NCC When

The National Cyber Cup by CYBER.ORG will take place over three days from May 3 - 5, 2022. Registration for the competition opens March 1, 2022. CYBER.ORG will host professional development sessions for team sponsors throughout the year that will prepare them for the format and offer best practices for leading a team through the competition.

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NCC Notes

Not every challenge will be immediately solvable with the tools and content-knowledge at hand. Many of the challenges are designed to test participants’ ability to view problems from different angles and research potential solutions until they are able to capture the flags. Flags will be assigned a point value based on difficulty. Some will be self-explanatory, while others will push participants to their limits. Team leaders and participants with little-to-no cybersecurity content knowledge will be able to compete and engage in the competition. This practice site is designed to introduce team leaders and participants to the format of the competition and some introductory challenges.

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Team Requirements 

  • Participants register as a team of 1-4 individuals.
  • Each team must be registered and led by a team sponsor. A team sponsor must be an adult that oversees registration activities and receives and relays all communications regarding the National Cyber Cup by CYBER.ORG. A team sponsor may be a teacher, club leader, or other adult leader. 
  • Participants and Team Sponsors must be citizens within the United States or territories. 

The Competition 

The National Cyber Cup by CYBER.ORG will be a three-day, web-based competition in the format of a Jeopardy-style Capture the Flag.  Challenges will be open for teams to solve for the entirety of the three days, and participants can view team scores as they change in real time. After the challenges close, the judges will review the final scores to confirm the winning team. 

The grade-level-appropriate challenges will be open-answer formats ranging from simple math puzzles to cybersecurity knowledge-based questions. Participants are allowed to use the internet and other outside resources to research and answer questions. 

Preparing for the Competition 

Practice challenges will be open until April 2022.

Becoming a Team Sponsor

Each team must be registered and led by a team sponsor. A team sponsor must be an adult that oversees registration activities and receives and relays all communications regarding the National Cyber Cup by CYBER.ORG. A team sponsor may be a teacher, club leader, or other adult leader. Learn more about what the role entails from the Team Sponsor Manual.

The virtual professional development workshop “Introduction to National Cyber Cup by CYBER.ORG” is a great opportunity for team sponsors and prospective team sponsors to learn more and ask questions of competition organizers. Attendees can expect to learn the basics of the competition, from how to lead students through practice challenges to the nuts and bolts of registration. This workshop will be held on four dates throughout the school year.