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Brady Bunch Boondoggle Redux – Answers and Winners

| July 17, 2009

sam-opening-pic.jpgAll of the answers from Brady Bunch Boondoggle, the Skillz H@ck1ng Challenge from February 2009, are revealed as we continue our story with Oliver and Mr. Brady discussing the packet capture of the kids’ hacking activity.  While pondering who could help them with the analysis of the data, a bright light flashes with a rumble that shakes the house.

Oliver asks "What happened Mr. Brady?"

"I moved the island Oliver.  We’re 3 months in the future now."

"Oh … OK.  Who can we get to help us analyze this wireless packet capture?"

At the backdoor, a voice calls "Did someone say wireless packet capture?"


The Technical Winner, Creative Winner and the Random Winner are all listed at the end of the article.

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Brady Bunch Boondoggle

| February 5, 2009

Challenge Extended until March 16! 

peter_fu.jpgDearest challenge fans,

We’ve got a special treat for you this time around. Josh Wright of InGuardians has created a simply fantastic challenge based on the beloved 1970’s TV show, _The_Brady_Bunch_. I grew up watching the Brady’s crazy antics again and again in re-runs, and love how Josh has interweaved the show’s lore throughout his challenge. But, even if you aren’t into the Bradys, there is so much gee-whiz technical awesomeness here, you really should work through this one, my friends. Josh’s funk is multi-layered, and there is a bunch to be learned by all of us from this one. Don’t skip it or be intimidated by it… just start working your way through it, carefully and methodically, and enjoy all of the beautiful twists and turns Josh has crafted. I honestly think this is one of our best challenges yet!

As usual, we’ll have three prizes: one for the best technical answer, one for the most creative answer that is technically correct, and one random draw winner. You must submit something to qualify for the random draw, so send in even partially completed answers. Winners will receive signed copies of my book, Counter Hack Reloaded. All entries are due by March 9, 2009 March 16, 2009.

–Ed Skoudis
Co-Founder, InGuardians, SANS Fellow, EthicalHacker.net Challenge Master, Author of Counter Hack Reloaded, Josh Wright Fan

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Santa Claus is Hacking to Town – Answers and Winners

| January 20, 2009

busted.jpgHello, challenge fans! This is Ed Skoudis, your genial challenge host, here to announce the answers and winners for our Santa Claus is Hacking to Town extravaganza.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, I try to make each of these challenges unique in some way, pushing the envelope a little bit with our challenge format, twiddling with the structure, theme, technical focus, and so forth, just to mix it up. This challenge was no exception. Pretty much every challenge we’ve done so far (28 of them in total) has focused on having readers analyze a hack and talk about what the bad guy did, devising strategies for defending against such wickedness. In this Santa challenge, we reversed roles, having you, the readers, devise an attack strategy to achieve a goal. I even made it a little more open ended than usual by creating a contrivance so you could select one additional tool to download and use in your attack. I flipped things around to make this challenge more offensive in nature, modeling the kinds of improvisation that penetration testers and ethical hackers often need to display.

So, the good news is that you guys got very creative, with different answers posing all kinds of interesting attack strategies, tactics, and tools. But, this flexibility and attack focus introduced a bit of downside for me. With so many different answers using so many different kinds of tools, it took a lot more time to judge this one to determine the winners. I had to test out each tactic you guys threw at me, just to see if it would work, in a lab designed to mimic the Burgermeister’s jail cell.

And that brings us to another aspect of this particular challenge. The quality of answers you guys submitted on this one was astoundingly good. I was seriously impressed with the technical ingenuity, creative flair, and solid writing exhibited in over ten different sets of answers. Quite honestly, this was, by far, the most difficult challenge I’ve ever had to judge because of the large number of really high-quality entries. But, I did carefully look through every single answer, and selected the best quality ones I could.

–Ed Skoudis
Co-Founder, InGuardians, SANS Fellow, EthicalHacker.net Challenge Master, Author of Counter Hack Reloaded, Santa Elf Trainee

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Scooby Doo and the Crypto Caper – Answers and Winners

| January 5, 2009

scooby_laptop.jpgAnd the Scooby Snacks go to…

Thanks again to all who participated in this multi-faceted challenge. Although we all love Ed Skoudis’ creations, Kevin Bong has once again proven to be more than worthy of penning some of our fun and educational contests. Where else can you find a 70s classic cartoon intermixed with some crypto to reveal a little Zeppelin all in the name of expanding your forensics skillz? Well done, Kevin. We look forward to another one of his creations later in 2009.

Since it is the start of a new year and yet another perfect time to show appreciation, this one goes out to our gracious host, Ed Skoudis on InGuardians. I’ve mentioned this in the past, but it is worth pointing out once again. For the betterment of EH-Net and the Ethical Hacking / Pen Testing Community as a whole, Ed volunteers his vast talents and resources to bring you what I truly believe to be a unique, educational experience. It is an honor to have him, and I look forward to many more years of collaboration.

Donald C. Donzal
Editor-In-Chief

Heeeeerrreee’s Kevin! 

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Santa Claus is Hacking to Town

| December 2, 2008

busted.jpgHappy holidays, challenge fans!  In the spirit of the season, I’ve written a Santa Claus challenge for you, titled “Santa Claus is Hacking to Town.”  This one is adapted from the classic 1970 Rankin & Bass television production, which used stop-motion animation and nifty puppets to tell the story of Kris Kringle.  As a child, this was one of my favorite Christmas TV specials, and I’m thrilled to recast it as an ethical hacking challenge.  You don’t need to be familiar with the original TV show to participate in the challenge, of course.  Analyze the clues, devise your strategy, and carefully answer the questions to win a prize.  Answers are due by December 31, 2008.  We’ll choose three winners (best technical answer, most creative answer that is technically correct, and a random draw winner) to get a copy of my book, Counter Hack Reloaded, the ultimate stocking stuffer.  Even if you can’t answer all the questions, send in your best guess to qualify for that random draw slot.

Even though you don’t have to be familiar with the original TV show to answer the challenge questions, for those of you who haven’t seen the original Santa Claus is Coming to Town TV show or want to relive that childhood wonder of watching Kris Kringle grow up into Santa, you can watch its five parts on YouTube here:

"Santa Claus is Coming to Town" Part 1 – Part 2 – Part 3 – Part 4 – Part 5
And now… on with the challenge!

–Ed Skoudis
Co-Founder, InGuardians, SANS Fellow, EthicalHacker.net Challenge Master, Author of Counter Hack Reloaded, Santa Elf Trainee

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It Happened One Friday – Answers and Winners

| October 27, 2008

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At long last, we’ve completed final judging on the It Happened One Friday challenge.  I apologize for the delay, but things have been very hectic here.  We received a huge number of really top-notch entries in this challenge, and reading through every one of them and whittling them down to our final winners was fun but incredibly time-consuming.  However, I’m really happy with the final results – the technical and creative winners did some awesome work, as did many others worthy of an honorable mention.

Given the unusual nature of this challenge, before I announce the winners, I’d like to provide a little context to describe why Matt Carpenter and I wrote it the way we did.  If you will kindly indulge my explanation for just a bit, I’ll describe for you a little bit about the process of writing these challenges, and how this one in particular came to be.  Alternatively, if you are impatient, you can skip these author’s notes and jump to the announcement of the winners by clicking here

–Ed Skoudis, InGuardians
Author, Counter Hack Reloaded

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Scooby Doo and the Crypto Caper

| October 9, 2008

scooby_laptop.jpgRuh-Roh, challenge fans…

Ed Skoudis here to introduce a new infosec- themed challenge for you to solve. In this one, challenge writer- extraordinaire Kevin Bong has brewed up a real doozy for you all based on a Scooby Doo theme. Grab a Scooby-Snack, hop in the Mystery Machine, and help the gang solve one of their toughest capers yet. Along the way, you’ll contend with some fascinating forensics puzzles and develop your skills. Answers are due back by November 15, 2008. As always, we’ll award the fine prize of a book to the best technical answer, the most creative technical answer that is also technically correct, and to a random-draw winner.

Please note that I’ll be announcing the winner of our previous challenge, It Happened One Friday, in the next few days, so please stay tuned!

If you can’t answer this challenge 100%, still send something in to qualify as a random winner. This month’s prize is my book, Counter Hack Reloaded, which I authored with Tom Liston. Each winner gets a signed copy.

Thank you,
–Ed Skoudis, InGuardians
The Ethicalhacker.net Challenge Guy



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Frosty the Snow Crash – Answers and Winners

| April 2, 2008

We Have Winners!!

computersnow2.jpg

At long last, I’ve scoured through the amazing entries you guys sent for the Frosty the Snow Crash challenge… just in time for your snowmen to melt on a fine Spring day.  I apologize for the delay, but I had to finish writing my new 6-day SANS course and work with Matt Carpenter to write the new "It Happened One Friday" challenge, which has consumed me for 80+ hours per week over the past several months.  But, now it’s time to announce our winners for the Frosty the Snow Crash challenge.  The competition was fierce, as many of you submitted brilliant work.  I was dazzled with your technical prowess and delighted with your creativity.

Please remember that judging was very difficult.  I spent between ten and ninety minutes reading each response and carefully divining the best of the best.  Besides the actual winning entries, those that received honorable mention are quite brilliant, and deserve kudos.  Don’t be disappointed if you got an honorable mention but didn’t win.  An honorable mention in a contest like this is a major accomplishment, given the really high quality of the many entries we received.


Remember Challenge Fans, as always, we’ll award three prizes: One for the best technical answer, one for the most creative answer that is technically correct, and one awarded to a winner chosen randomly. This month’s prize is my book, Malware: Fighting Malicious Code, which I authored with Lenny Zeltser.

–Ed Skoudis, Intelguardians
Author, Counter Hack Reloaded

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