Implementation of real-time cybersecurity training through the integration of a hypervisor and an online CTF engine
Vélez Rodríguez, Carlos Y.
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During 2017 and 2018, undergraduate and graduate students from the ECECS Department at the PUPR have seen an academic improvement in cybersecurity from their participation in Capture the Flag (CTF) competitions. These strategy-based cybersecurity challenges, often hosted by universities, federal agencies, and national laboratories, can serve as an applied learning tool. Three CTFs in particular; National Cyber League, Cyberfire, and in-house CTF framework are discussed in this paper. The NCL competitions saw a score percentage increase in Log Analysis and Wireless Application Exploitation. In the 2018 Cyberfire competition, the PUPR team won first place among more than 100 teams including top universities. The recent implementation of the PUPR CTF framework has spiked the interest of students across the campus. To date, an improvement in critical thinking, teamwork, and familiarity with real-life scenarios is benefiting students at our department. Based on these observations, we aim to continue monitoring student development, in addition to incorporating topics covered in the CTFs into the curriculum. Key Terms CTF, Cryptography, Cybersecurity, Hypervisor.