The Kill Chain – Facts behind the Fiction Part 15

Capture the Flag Competitions

The Kill Chain is the cybercrime thriller from Scotland’s newest writer, GJ Scobie, which will be published by Darkstroke on the 16th July 2022. This blog post is one in a series called Facts behind the Fiction, in which I take an aspect of the plot and provide factual background material, giving an insight into the real world of cyber security and those who work tirelessly to defend our networks and data.

So, what is a capture the flag competition?

The novel begins at the end of such a competition and is used to inform the reader that the main character, Jacob Anderson, is a member of a team taking part. In cybersecurity it is a hacking competition, where teams can compete in a range of challenges as set up by the organisers. For example, they may be set the task of breaking into an internet enabled device within a certain timescale.

They can serve as educational exercises, where participants can hone both their attacking and defensive skills, and learn valuable lessons from each other. In competitions that deal with attack and defence, each team is given a computer or a network to defend. Scoring is determined by their success in defending their own systems, while attacking their opponents.

Next time, TOR. What is it?

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