Idea: Large-scale cracking contests as a sport.

You have an attack team and a defense team. There's some kind of system (Web site, application, database, email, whatever) that is the focus of the whole thing.

The defense team gets a few hours to harden the system, then the attack team gets some time to try to break in and achieve one of several objectives. The attackers get more points the more they accomplish (theft > destruction > DoS). The defenders get more points the longer they hold out.

Related idea: Secure programming tournament. Programmers submit their code to be pen-tested in a gamified manner.

A team of crackers goes at each program at a given level, with the program holding out longer in each match-up advancing to the next level and the next team of crackers.

The crackers are ranked by how long they took to break into the strongest program that was eventually cracked (the champion might well never be cracked), in order to determine their order in the next tournament.


@alexbuzzbee we get the sense that cracking might not lend itself well to typical tournaments. namely, we are under the impression that systems are most likely to be insecure when they've grown very large, and also that breaking into them can take weeks or more. unless you imposed heavy constraints on the competition, a single match could last months or years.

@diodelass Yes, the whole tournament would take several months to complete. It's certainly a slower thing than most games, but I think it would still be interesting.

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