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AFA Applauds Advancing Teams in National Cybersecurity Competition
Nov 09, 2010 (03:11 PM EST)



All-Service Division Completes Second Round of CyberPatriot

ARLINGTON, Va., Nov. 9, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Air Force Association congratulates the qualifying teams that have advanced to the third round in the nation's largest and fastest-growing youth cybersecurity challenge.

CyberPatriot, an education initiative produced by AFA to inspire students to consider science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields in their studies, completed a second round of competition on Saturday, November 6. Nationwide, and in U.S. Department of Defense Dependent Schools in Japan, Korea and Guam, teams raced against time and their opponents to quickly find and effectively correct vulnerabilities in a virtual network.

Though nearly 400 teams registered in the All-Service Division, approximately 80 teams scored high enough to compete again come December 4.

"There was a wealth of strong participants doing exceptional work here and we congratulate them all for their unyielding efforts," said Bernie Skoch, CyberPatriot Commissioner. "We are ecstatic about the success of this round. CyberPatriot is truly changing the way today's youth view cybersecurity and hopefully inspiring them to become the cyber defenders our nation desperately needs."

Overall, the two-track competition has teams registered from public, private, parochial and home schools in the Open Division while JROTC units of all Services and Civil Air Patrol squadrons filled the All-Service Division. In all, more than 650 teams registered to participate in the competition.

Though the first round was accompanied with some technical challenges, this second round saw hundreds of teams working with highly scalable cyber defense game technology as Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC), one of the founding partners and a leading provider of scientific, engineering, systems integration and technical services and solutions, developed a distributed game system to provide simultaneous, interactive play between hundreds of users via the Internet while being interconnected with a central CyberNEXS server. The central server, in return, supports the program for tracking, scoring, reporting and coordinating the game.

"The way we have architected software with this distributed game system is novel," said Carleton "Duke" Ayers, Vice President for SAIC.  "It's an evolving technology. There are occasionally issues with it, but with each run in this competition the whole capability gets stronger and is something that will assist AFA in realizing their vision in educating U.S. students about cybersecurity."

Top teams will continue to compete in a series of online rounds to determine finalists for the Championship Round at the Gaylord National Convention Center in Washington, D.C. in April 2011.

A list of the advancing teams will be available soon at www.uscyberpatriot.org.

CyberPatriot is presented by Northrop Grumman, with founding partners SAIC and the CIAS at the University of Texas-San Antonio. More can be learned about the program at

The AFA is a 501(C)(3), nonprofit organization promoting public understanding of aerospace power and the pivotal role it plays in the security of the nation. AFA has over 200 chapters nationally and internationally representing 120,000 members.

SOURCE Air Force Association