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The SANS 2022 Holiday Hack Challenge is open to players of all skill levels

The SANS 2022 Holiday Hack Challenge is open to players of all skill levels

Collaborative research and education organization SANS Institute has officially opened its 21st annual Holiday Hack Challenge.

SANS says the free, practical cyber security challenge – Holiday Hack Challenge – is open to all skill levels and ages, where players will have their skills tested by a “holiday supervillain with the potential to win prizes ranging from cyber security goodies to the grand prize of a free SANS online training course”.

SANS notes that contestants can join Santa to “save the holiday season from betrayal by recovering five precious rings, each ring representing a different mission to defeat cyber security obstacles and change the course of the future”.



“We are thrilled to present another year of the SANS Holiday Hack Challenge,” said Ed Skoudis, president of the SANS Technology Institute college and SANS Chief Holiday Officer.

“We’ve been saving the holidays with the cybersecurity community since 2002, and this year we hope even more players will join the fray in this playful way to advance critical skills and cyber capabilities around the world.”

SANS says more than 17,000 players participated in 2021, and this year’s Holiday Hack Challenge is expected to reach even more cybersecurity professionals and students – and the virtual co-op game allows players to create custom avatars and team up with teammates, friends and players around the world in this “one-of-a-kind shared virtual experience to explore the North Pole while advancing their cybersecurity skills across cloud security, investigative, offensive and defensive security and more”.

“Our cyber security elves saved the season last year, protecting Santa and the North Pole from danger, and we thought all the holidays would be safe for years to come,” said Ed Skoudis.

“We’ve discovered that evil still lurks across the icy terrain, so we need to call on our cybersecurity community, from undergrads to seasoned professionals, to join us in this mission to save the holidays once again!”

The Holiday Hack Challenge takes place in conjunction with KringleCon 2022, a virtual conference hosted at the North Pole, featuring a series of talks from cybersecurity experts discussing the latest information security topics.

Some talks will also include hints to help players build skills to solve this year’s Holiday Hack challenges, and both events will take place from December to early January.

says the SANS Institute click here to learn more about the 2022 SANS Holiday Hack Challenge and KringleCon.

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