A team representing UW CSE placed second in the USENIX Security Grand Challenge, held during the USENIX Security Conference, August 12-14 in Montreal.
On the day of the competition, each team received a virtualized server, with a number of services. The services were implemented in different languages (e.g., C, Java, or Python) and were both web-based and stand-alone. However, each service had a number of hidden security flaws, which were implanted by the organizers. The task of the participants was to modify and improve their servers so that they become resilient to attacks. During the competition, an automated scoring system kept track of what services were functional. At the same time, an automated attack system performed disruptive attacks against the services. At the end of the competition, the team whose server was able to provide the highest service level won.
The UW CSE team consisted of Alexei Czeskis (PhD student), Iva Dermendjieva (undergraduate), Sam Guarnieri (PhD student), Karl Koscher (PhD student), Franzi Roesner (PhD student), and Hussein Yapit (undergraduate).