echoCTF on MENA ISC 2017

We’re back from another successful echoCTF based Hackathon that took place in Riyadh (KSA) for the MENA ISC 2017, which was organized by our partners at VirtuPort.

This was the largest and most dazzling implementation of echoCTF we’ve performed so far. Fourteen teams with more than 60 participants in total, competed for the prizes. echoCTF included 60 target servers in total, of which 20 targets were PLCs embedded on a model city in order to provide smart functionality for the city infrastructure and visualization of impacts when such infrastructure is successfully attacked.

Hackathon Hall Hackathon Hall

The entire event and Hackathon was streamed live on YouTube. Watch videos through the links at the end of this post to get a taste of what it feels like being in such an event.

Everything was interconnected through echoCTF’s highly optimized OpenBSD gateway, which provided robust networking, player activity tracking, gameplay monitoring and team scoring, smoothly for the entire event duration.

Fun fact: The entire real time network based scoring system was implemented using OpenBSD PF match rules.

The model city was exclusively produced for this event, themed with representative infrastructure and landmark buildings from Riyadh. The resulting model contained scaled 3D printings of large skyscrapers and other infrastructure, such as oil pumps, all providing smart control of their operations. If you want to identify the details of the model city, a video feed from cameras on the model city may be found at the end of this post.

Model City View Model City closer view

All 60 targets were prone to attacks and contained numerous vulnerabilities of different levels of difficulty, waiting to be discovered by the participants. Successful attacks could award participants with points for 300 different flags, findings and challenges. The implementation utilized a plethora of systems and applications, simulating well-known IT and SCADA infrastructure which were hosted on 40 docker containers, 5 Raspberry PI and 15 Arduino devices.

As with every echoCTF competition, visual effects were present throughout the event:

  • More than 600 LEDs provided special effects which visualized hacks on the model city itself
  • A large number of controllable elements such as traffic lights, wind turbines, a train, a monorail, oil pumps and much more were installed to realistically demonstrate the effects of penetrating smart city infrastructure
  • A video projector was displaying competition statistics, such as the scoreboard and information streams, and real-time graphical visualizations of network activity

Model City top view

We are looking forward to another dazzling echoCTF on MENA ISC 2018.

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