SCSU takes third in regional cyber defense competition

Photo courtesy of St. Cloud State University. SCSU Cyber Defense Team.
Photo courtesy of St. Cloud State University. Pictured above is the Cyber Defense Team.

SCSU took third in the Midwest Regional cyber defense competition that took place April 1st through 2nd.

The competition occurred in three stages: state, regional and national, beginning as a statewide competition among universities and two-year colleges in certain states. Minnesota is one of the 10 states in the Midwest Regional competition, and each state in this region held its own state competition.

The state competition was a single-day event beginning the morning of Feb. 27. Each college had an eight-student team that was given a network of computers to keep secure and running. St. Cloud’s team was guided by adviser Tirthankar Ghosh.

A professional team of ethical hackers created the challenge, invading each team’s network. Every half an hour to an hour, teams were given a task to complete and were required to submit a report within a certain timeframe. The team that ended with the most points won the competition.

The regional competition, which took place at Moraine Hills Community College, came next and was created to be more complicated than the state competition. SCSU finished in third place.

Jordan Jenkins, a team member, stated, “[The competition] is set up so that most teams are getting destroyed. No matter how much you train, you’re still not prepared for it.”

Scott Rysdahl, team captain, also added that, “We weren’t given any time to practice. A few days in advance, we were sent a list of technologies and services that would be there, so we sort of had to make it up as we went along.”

There were 10 regional competitions all over the country. The winner of each regional competition goes to the national competition which will take place in San Antonio, Tex., April 22nd through 24th. The winning team will be recognized in May at the Secure360 conference.

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