Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The 2014 UAT WRCCDC Team
By William Hartmann, Senior NetSec and Tech Forensics Student

            The Spring semester is looked forward to by a certain group of Network Security students. There’s two main reasons for this: Black Hat volunteer registration takes place, and the Western Regional Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition takes place. Most know about Black Hat, which is a national network security professional conference that takes place each year in Las Vegas, Nevada. The WRCCDC is not known by very many outside of the competitors. So, what exactly is this event? The Western Regional Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition in Pomona, California is a weekend long battle pitting a team of eight students against actual security professionals attempting to penetrate their networks. The students have to fend off attacks while maintaining services (such as a website, email server, etc.) and provide support to simulated customers. They also receive periodic “support tickets” called injects, which require things like adding user accounts, writing policies, or even giving presentations to a Board of Directors. This board is usually made up of other industry professionals, judging them as they would their own employees. While it is an extremely difficult weekend, the payoff is wonderful, giving students a chance to test their skills, and network with those in the industry. The top team gets to compete in the National CCDC, in San Antonio, Texas. No matter what place, it still makes a great resume booster as well. This year’s team has been working hard, and will participate in the qualifier March 1st, which decides whether or not they get to compete in Pomona.