Centreville High School cyber security clubs placed fifth at the fifth annual MetaCTF (capture the flag) at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. Students worked on challenges and learned new techniques and concepts related to cybersecurity from technical skills such as reconnaissance, cryptography, binary and web exploitation, reverse engineering, and forensics to legal and business skills such as risk management and incident response. Solving these challenges granted teams digital flags, which were then exchanged for points over the nine-hour event. Students competed against 36 different teams from high schools around the state, and alongside 65 universities and colleges from Virginia and the surrounding area.

This event was such a great first capture the flag (CTF) event for our team. Most of members were very familiar with the AFA Cyberpatriot competition, but a CTF has a unique twist. In Cyberpatriot, teams work to secure a VM image within six hours. In a CTF (which can range from a day to much longer), teams get the chance to practice a wide varitiy of skills to get digital “flags”.