Capture the Flag for Cyber-Resilience Exercising through Cryptographic Puzzles and Collaborative Problem-Solving

Publication Type:

Journal Article

Source:

Information & Security: An International Journal, Volume 37, p.95-102 (2017)

Keywords:

capture the flag, collaboration, cryptography, CTF, cyber resilience, problem-solving

Abstract:

The importance of cybersecurity in the digital society and our daily lives is becoming increasingly apparent. With the rise of digital reliance, securing information, whether this information is at rest, in transit, or in use, is vital to ensuring the interoperability of systems, including critical infrastructure, on which society’s physical well-being depends. Cryptography is well-known for its role in cybersecurity as a crucial tool for protecting information exchanged via digital devices. Cryptography is the science of concealing information so that only the intended parties can read it. As a result, we may generalise that cryptography enables people to communicate via the Internet while securely sending critical and secret information. However, cryptography is a relatively complex combination of mathematics and computer science, where typical learning methodologies may fall short when it comes to achieving hands-on expertise. This paper provides an overview of the possibilities of Capture the Flag (CTF) exercises to test cybersecurity capabilities using collaborative methodologies and cryptographic challenges.