U.S. Cyber Challenge Announces Winners of Cyber Quests III

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Nearly 500 Competitors Take Part in National Cyber Security Competition--First Place Winner Receives Trip to SANS NetWars

The value of this Cyber Quest is almost immeasurable...there's no telling just how far these opportunities will take me.

The U.S. Cyber Challenge (USCC) today announced the winners of its latest Cyber Quests, a national online competition allowing participants to demonstrate their knowledge in a variety of information security disciplines.
Chad Weber, a sophomore at Vermont Technical College was the first place winner in the Cyber Quests III and will receive a trip to a SANS NetWars competition. The second place winner was Ben Toews, a graduate of DePaul University in Illinois. Third place winner was Dan Borges, a senior at East Stroudsburg University in Pennsylvania.

Nearly 500 students from more than 160 schools across 43 states registered for Cyber Quests III, which concluded on September 15. A number of post-graduate and professionals participated as well. The Quest features a quiz designed for an intermediate skill level and was based upon a network packet capture file that participants had to analyze to identify and interpret various types of web application attacks. Winners were determined based on who achieved the highest score in the shortest amount of time. The complete scoreboard of participants is available online.

“The value of this Cyber Quest is almost immeasurable to me, because there's no telling just how far these opportunities will take me,” said Weber.

As the recipient of the trip to SANS NetWars, Weber will have a unique opportunity to join cyber security professionals and sharpen his skills in such areas as penetration testing and forensics investigation. NetWars participants compete in a mock environment to test both their offensive and defensive skills as they analyze malicious artifacts and plan and launch attacks against a simulated DMZ and internal network.

“Congratulations to Chad, Ben, Dan and all of our participants,” said Karen S. Evans, U.S. Cyber Challenge National Director. “We thank the SANS Institute for providing the winner with attendance at NetWars, which attracts experienced professionals who raise the bar for all participants.”

“This challenges was the most complex Cyber Quest we’ve ever created, and we were really impressed by the top-notch results of the winners,” said Ed Skoudis, SANS Institute Instructor. “The best part is that we’ll now get to see these folks further show off and develop their skills as they move on to a whole new level of intensity in NetWars.”

In addition to providing training and other awards, the Cyber Quests III competition served as the qualifier for students to be invited to attend the Fall Cyber Camp in North Carolina, being conducted October 10-14 at Catawba Valley Community College in Hickory.

The Cyber Quests are part of several initiatives underway through USCC, which conducts national competitions and camps that enable individuals to develop their skills, gain access to advanced training, and achieve recognition with scholarships, internships and jobs.
The SANS Institute is the founding sponsor of Cyber Quests.

About U.S. Cyber Challenge:
The mission of the U.S. Cyber Challenge (USCC), a division of the Center for Internet Security, is to significantly reduce the shortage in the cyber workforce by identifying, recruiting and placing the next generation of cyber security professionals. USCC's goal is to find 10,000 of America's best and brightest to fill the ranks of cyber security professionals where their skills can be of the greatest value to the nation.


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