International Cybersecurity Challenge: A global event to compete in cyber skills
Technological advances come with a compromise as they give rise to an ever-increasing cyber-threat landscape. This year's ICC event in San Diego, US is inviting young minds to not only test their cyber skills but also to consider cybersecurity as a profession to build a digitally secure future
Digital transformation in modern societies has the potential to offer a range of benefits to citizens, organisations, and governments. Yet, technological advances may come with a compromise as they give rise to an ever-increasing cyber-threat landscape. Building a digitally secure society globally is of paramount importance as cyber-attacks are not confined within geographical limits and can have devastating consequences. According to a report from the World Economic Forum, the nature of cyber-attacks has shifted, aiming to disrupt business and cause reputational damage. Almost half of the interviewed business leaders in the same study believe that their organisation will experience a cyber-attack within the next two years, arguing that challenges in recruiting and retaining cybersecurity experts leave their organisations exposed to significant risk.
Challenges in human resources are further illustrated in a cybersecurity workforce study produced by ISC2, where an estimated 3.4M jobs remain vacant worldwide. The report paints a dire picture, as educational institutions have increased the number of cybersecurity experts in 2022, yet the gap in the cybersecurity workforce continues to increase rapidly. The European Commission responding to the market’s need for cybersecurity professionals has announced an initiative to create a Cybersecurity Skills Academy in 2023. The Academy will identify the skills needed in cybersecurity and will provide training for people who wish to pursue a relevant career. Capture the Flag (CTF) events are an excellent way to enhance skills that are essential for a career in cybersecurity and have the potential to underpin a Cyber Skills Academy. CTFs gamify aspects of cybersecurity knowledge to make it appealing to younger age groups and educate people on how to stay safe online.
The European Union Agency for Cybersecurity (ENISA) is a major actor in the ENISA has been at the forefront of building cybersecurity capacity in EU member states by organising various exercises and challenges for a wide variety of stakeholders. Since 2016, ENISA has been coordinating the European Cybersecurity Challenge (ECSC) to encourage young people to pursue a career in cybersecurity. Over the past 6 years, ECSC has attracted the interest of all European Member States, has promoted national CTFs and has provided the opportunity to thousands of people to enhance their cybersecurity skills.
Building on the success of the ECSC and ENISA together with several regional and international organisations, it was decided to design and host the International Cybersecurity Challenge (ICC) for the first time. The aim of ICC is to attract young talent and raise awareness in the global community on the education and skills needed in cybersecurity. By pioneering in designing an international challenge, we believe that the ICC brand will be associated with the top cybersecurity talents of the world and also anticipate that ICC will become one of the key incubators of cybersecurity entrepreneurship and future top security experts.
ENISA hosted the first ICC event in Greece between the 14th – 17th of June 2022, where seven regional teams comprising fifteen players each and representing more than 40 countries competed in the ‘Jeopardy’ and ‘Attack & Defence’ challenges. To decide on the final players who traveled to Athens, countries who fall within the same geographical regions convened to create preliminary regional CTFs. More than 4000 people from 64 nations participated in these events. In certain cases, ICC enabled countries to host a national CTF for the first time and further offered opportunities to all players to enhance their skills by providing training platforms and materials over a period of six months. As ICC requires players to compete in a wide set of challenges ranging from forensics, reverse engineering, web exploitation, cryptography, and binary exploitation to Attack & Defense, escape rooms, and hardware participants of ICC cover the skills needed and the knowledge required for more than 50% of the cybersecurity roles identified in the European Cybersecurity Skills Framework. The next ICC event is organised in San Diego, US from 31st July to 4th August 2023. Regional CTFs are underway, with increased participation from all regions and the potential to host more teams.
India Cyber Games (ICG) is a part of the International Cybersecurity Challenge (ICC) Initiative.
The mission of the India Cyber Games (ICG) is to bring talented cybersecurity athletes, coaches, universities, and corporate sponsors together to build an elite India Cyber Team (ICT) for the annual International Cybersecurity Challenge (ICC) as well as other events.
Dr. Ioannis Agrafiotis, Officer in Capacity Building, ENISA - European Union Agency for Cybersecurity
Mr. Nimitt Jhaveri Chairman - India Cyber Games Initiative https://indiacyberteam.in
One click to join the ICG community https://discord.gg/hGCFSc8vX6
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