NSU Team in Top Ten at International Computer Security Competition

The D-CTF 2019 international computer security competition finals were held in Bucharest (Romania) on November 7 to 8. The competition was part of DefCamp 2019, the annual information security conference. Sixteen teams from France, Poland, Romania, South Korea, Sweden, Russia, Norway, and Germany participated in the finals. With 1,714 points, “SUSLo.PAS”, the Novosibirsk State University team, was seventh in the overall ratings and first among Russian teams.

Team member Alexander Tkachev talked about the competition,

The value of a problem decreases with the number of teams that solve it. The rational is that if many teams are able to solve a problem, it is easy and should not be worth as much. In addition, the first three teams who solve it receive bonus points. Unfortunately, we were stuck on one of the first problems. Our solution worked for us but did not work on the organizers server. If it were not for this, we might have been in the top five based on bonus points for the first solutions.

The format was one unusual aspect of this competition with teams receiving a set of problems to solve in 24 hours. Participants also noted the dynamic scoring system and controversial problems.

Tkachev continued,

This format is convenient for qualifying rounds that take place online when you solve the problems from home. However, when you need to be at the conference site to access problems, it is hard to rest. You have to either return to the hotel or sleep right there. This was our first competition with this format so in the future we will take this into account.