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The close chase at the Final Round of WhiteHat Grand Prix 2014

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  • The close chase at the Final Round of WhiteHat Grand Prix 2014

    October 25, the Final Round of WhiteHat Grand Prix 2014 takes place simultaneously in two stations Grand Plaza, Hanoi and Saigon Vissai, Ho Chi Minh City. Both parts of the contest are the close chase of teams to become the champion who wins the Grand Prize of 100 million VND.

    Participants of the Final Round of WhiteHat Grand Prix 2014 are teams who had excellent performance in Qualification Round taking place on September 19. Some teams’ members participated in and got high ranking in other CTF contest in the world.

    Nguyen Xuan Khoa from R3d5ky - the youngest team in the Northern league shares: "We are quite eager and looking forward to the Final Round of the contest".

    At 9:30 the hall opens. Members of the teams quickly carry out procedures and receive entry card. Mr. Ngo Tuan Anh, Bkav’s Vice President of Cyber Security declares the opening of the Final Round of Grand Prix WhiteHat 2014. The provisions of contest are introduced to the teams. The Final Round will consist of 2 parts and last in 5 hours. Beside challenges on certain topics (Jeopardy), the teams will participate in the Attack/Defense – first time used in Vietnam.

    At 10:00a.m, challenges in Part 1 of Final Round of WhiteHat Grand Prix 2014 are opened. The chase between 9 teams from both stations in Northern and Southern officially starts. After 5 minutes, the scoreboard witnesses the first change when submits the correct answer for one of Network challenges, getting 300 points. In Qualification Round, ranks the first in Northern league.
    Members of

    Network challenge with 300 points is also solved by r2u. The team quickly occupies the second position in the scoreboard. Then __BAMB00__, KQCQ and REBD got their first 300 points. The teams who haven’t scored begin speeding up.

    After 30 minutes of the contest, R3d5ky officially joins in the scoreboard with their first 300 points. However, at the same time, resumes the gap with other teams by submitting the second correct answer of Reverse challenge. The team is on the top of the scoreboard with 600 points. The distance can only be eliminated by r2u’s efforts 20 minutes later with its successful submission of 300-point Forensics challenge.

    The chase between and r2u continues dramatically when submits the correct answer for one of Forensics challenges and gets 300 points, only 5 minutes later. However, shortly thereafter R3d5ky has simultaneously 2 correct answers, occupies the second position of the scoreboard. The team is only 7 seconds slower than the temporary leader R3d5ky separates their members into two groups to deal with the challenges. The excitement displays on all members’ faces.
    The youngest team in the Northern league - R3d5ky

    At this time, the scoreboard records the appearance of 6 teams. A member of the contest’s Technical Support Team comments: "The rankings will definitely changes a lot. babyrobots may have solved a number of challenges but has not submitted yet." babyrobots ranked the second of the Northern league in Qualification Round of WhiteHat Grand Prix 2014.

    Nearly 12:00a.m, the runner-up in Northern league babyrobots submits its first answer of the challenge Crypto, gets 300 points. At this time, the rankings has big change. __BAMB00__ by solving the question Programming 400 points, rises to rank the first in the scoreboard. However, the team can hold position only in 1 minute until the suggestions from the Organizer to all teams helps R3d5ky to solve one more Crypto challenge. R3d5ky leads the scoreboard with 1,200 points. r2u and seemingly slows down while in Southern station, REBD submits successfully a number of correct answers and occupies the third position of the scoreboard.
    __BAMB00__ tea

    Can’t wait any longer, babyrobots submits consecutively three answers and gets 900 points more. The team has the same points as the temporary leader __BAMB00__ now. Although arrives the lunchtime, neither team intends to leave the position to take food which is available right at the end side the hall.

    Holding its opportunity, babyrobots then submits the answer of Network 300 challenge, grabs the third position in the scoreboard from __BAMB00__. The total points of the team is 1,900. Members of babyrobots used to be static and work independently from the start of the Round now become urgent and gather in front of one laptop.
    High concentration of babyrobots

    "It is nearly 1 hour left before the first part of the contest ends. However, the turnaround of babyrobots has just shown us that it is difficult to know in advance whether there will be a change in rankings or not", one member of the Technical Support Team comments.

    1:00p.m, it is lunch time but hardly any candidates bother to eat. The Organizer has to provide meals and drinks to the position of each team, but the high concentration of teams makes them forget about hunger.

    1:10p.m __BAMB00__ solves one more Forensics 300 challenge, leveling the gap with babyrobots. It seems that only __BAMB00__ and babyrobots are in the race to be the champion now.

    It is only 6/12 challenges that have been solved. Teams have a lot of chances to change their rankings in the scoreboard. This is proved 10 minutes later when REBD takes advantage of the hint from the Organizer for Web 400 challenge to occupy the first position of the scoreboard. The team then consolidates its position by adding 400 points more from Programming challenge.

    1:30p.m The Organizer releases hint for Reverse challenge which is worth 500 points – same as the current gap between REBD and __BAMB00__. These teams rank No. 1 and No. 2 in the scoreboard. 3 members of REBD are quite familiar in the field of cyber security in Vietnam. They have participated and won high rankings in international CTF contests.

    The first past of Final Round has only 10 minutes left.__BAMB00__ narrows the gap with the leader with 100 points. The Organizer encourages teams to speed up by releasing new hint for Reverse 500 challenge. This is the highest-point challenge in Jeopardy part.

    Last minutes of Jeorpardy, REBD, __BAMB00__ and simultaneously submit their answers. However, the rankings does not change much. Part 1 of the Final Round closes, REBD tops with 2,800 points, followed babyrobots with the same points. __BAMB00__ ranks the third with 2,000 points. 1-26AM temporarily remain in the starting position.

    Two high-point challenges in the first part, Reverse 500 and Crypto 400, are unsolved.

    2:00p.m The second part of Final Round - Attack/Defense - begins. In this part, each team will be given a fund of 900 points. Upon each successful attack, the team will be added 50 points while its defeated team loses 50 points.
    The scoreboard when the second part starts

    According to the Organizer, the first 15 minutes will be spared for the teams to learn and patch their servers. The Attack and Defense officially starts when information of teams’ servers are posted to the homepage of the contest.

    2:28p.m is the first team to get 50 points of Attack and Defense. The team attacks successfully server of babyrobots. A few minutes later, continues to gain 50 points from KQCQ. However, the team soon becomes victim of r2u, hence loses 50 points.

    Attack and Defense seems to be the strength of REBD when the team consecutively attacks successfully servers of KQCQ, bkitsec, Avengers, babyrobots, then earns 200 points at the minute 35 of the contest. REBD confirms its first position in the scoreboard. babyrobots, after losing its 100 points due to being attacked by REBD and, earns 400 points by attacking servers of KQCQ, Avengers, bkitsec, R3d5ky.

    Meanwhile, __BAMB00__ also chases REBD closely. The gap between two teams is almost exclusively kept at 50 points while the total point of each team is on the rise.
    Technical Support Team is always at the ready

    It is about 15 minutes before the Final Round of WhiteHat Grand Prix 2014 ends. consecutively scores by attacking successfully servers of r2u and R3d5ky. The gap between and the No. 3 team babyrobots is 400 points. R3d5ky and r2u seem to have given up, knowing that they can’t change anything in the scoreboard. babyrobots express their satisfaction with the third position in the rankings.

    When the contest has only about 1 minute left, __BAMB00__ is successful in attacking servers of babyrobots, R3d5ky. The team overtakes REBD and occupies the No. 1 position in the scoreboard. The surprised change at the last minute made REBD unable to respond. The team can only look at the scoreboard with the full of regret when the contest officially comes to the end.
    REBD team at the Southern station

    WhiteHat Grand Prix ends with the final victory of __BAMB00__. The team gets the total of 4,100 points. The second position of the scoreboard belongs to REBD with 4,050 points. babyrobots ranks the third with 2,900 points.

    Pham Van Khanh – member of R3d5ky shares after the contest: "Since this is the first time we deal with the form Attack/Defense, it takes us a period of time to get familiar with it. We almost can’t show our strength in the second part. However, I'm not sad because all members have tried our best."

    One member from – the team that has a great success in the second part of the contest, says: "During last minutes of the Round we know that the final results can’t be changed. However, we still try hard to see what we can do. We hope that in the WhiteHat contest next year, will rank higher in the scoreboard".

    The followings are photos taken at the Final Round of WhiteHat Grand Prix 2014:
    R3d5ky checks in the contest quite early
    9:30a.m the hall opens
    The overview of the hall happening the contest
    Tran Lap singer with the song “Đường tới ngày vinh quang” (Road to glory days)
    Nguyen Xuan Khoa from R3d5ky has short interview before the contest
    Mr. Ngo Tuan Anh, Bkav’s Vice President of Cyber Security declares the opening of the Final Round of WhiteHat Grand Prix 2014

    Members of babyrobots

    Break time is forgotten because of high concentration
    Try to solve the challenges…
    Break time between two parts of the Final Round…
    Technical Support Team of the contest

    The Grand Prize of WhiteHat Grand Prix 2014 belongs to __BAMB00__
    The runner-up REBD won the prize 20 million VND
    babyrobots ranks the third in the contest
    Commemorative photo of teams in Northern station and the Organizer
    Last edited by sunny; 10-06-2015, 06:27 PM.