State Farm sponsored the second annual Capture the Flag contest for ISU students from November 4-November 9. A CTF competition challenges students to complete puzzles in categories like forensics, cryptography, trivia, and other security-related topics. This event gave students a chance to showcase their talents, and engage in some friendly competition for both bragging rights and cash prizes. Students could participate individually or in teams of up to four; this year, many decided to try it alone. A total of 64 students participated this year.
At the awards ceremony on November 11, students and contest developers had a half hour video conference to discuss both sides’ perceptions of the contest. Students expressed appreciation for challenges at a variety of skill levels and assorted topics, while developers were surprised at some of the challenges that were and weren’t solved, contrary to their expectations. At the end of the ceremony, the winners were announced. First place, and $150, went to Nicholas Dangles. Second place and $125 also went to an individual, Chris Mohrfeld. The third-place award, and $100 each went to a team of four, consisting of James Ellis, Evan Rappe, Ben Bradley, and Brandon James. Congratulations to all the winners!
ISU faculty and students are looking forward to next year’s event, to help students increase their skills in security and showcase what they’ve learned since this contest, and have another crack at some high point value challenges