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Meet the CyberTitans: Team Multiply and Surrender

Across the country, Canadian students competed in the CyberPatriot , a global youth cybersecurity competition. Out of over 300 Canadian teams the top 10 were selected to compete head to head in the CyberTitan national finals. Now in its 3rd year, CyberTitan has grown to be one of the largest national youth cyber defence competitions. So what does it take to be a CyberTitan? Through the “Meet the CyberTitans” blog series, hear from the teams that will be competing on June 8th in the first ever virtual CyberTitan competition.

Team Multiply and Surrender : William Lyon Mackenzie Collegiate Institute, ON.

Matthew Mach

What encouraged you to join Cybertitan?

I joined CyberTitan because I was curious about cybersecurity and I wanted to experience it for myself. I started competing last year and I wanted to compete again to see if we could win it all this time.

How has CyberTitan changed your perspective on the importance of Cybersecurity?

CyberTitan hasn’t really change my perspective on the importance of Cybersecurity. I’ve always knew that it was important but what this competition has shown me is that there’s a lot more depth to it. Before, I would follow basic security procedures on my computers, but now I know more about how to secure my computers.

Dereck Tu

What encouraged you to join Cybertitan?

I joined Cybertitan for the purpose of learning more about security hardening and CISCO. I was also captivated by the idea of finding exploits and patching them.

How has CyberTitan changed your perspective on the importance of Cybersecurity?

In all honesty, CyberTitan has not changed my perspective on the importance of Cybersecurity as I already understand that it is an essential component to account for when connected to the internet. I still appreciate that CyberTitan is inspiring Canadians to go into the Cybersecurity field.

Derek Zhang

What encouraged you to join Cybertitan?

My computer teacher approached me and asked if I wanted to take part in this competition. Our school had never participated in CyberTitan before so our team really didn’t know what to expect. We had a lot of fun being at school when everyone else had a PA day, but it’s generated interest in our school and so this year we had many more teams competing.

How has CyberTitan changed your perspective on the importance of Cybersecurity?

I did not realise that there was a high demand for cybersecurity jobs, as it is overshadowed by software development careers that are promoted in our media. CyberTitan has introduced me to the importance of cybersecurity, and the severe lack of qualified individuals. Most universities don’t even offer a cybersecurity major, so there is little access to formal training.

Junyi Wang

What encouraged you to join Cybertitan?

My friends encouraged me to do picoCTF 2019, which went unexpectedly well for us. Given that CyberTitan was a similarly themed contest, I decided to try my luck. Of course, I had a passion for security to begin with, but it was mostly through my friends that I heard about and found a team to participate in CyberTitan.

How has CyberTitan changed your perspective on the importance of Cybersecurity?

I used to think that the balance is heavily tipped to the defenders’ side, since it is theoretically possible to build software and hardware completely without vulnerabilities. Now I realize that in practice, software systems are massive and too complex to get remotely close to completely vulnerability-free. Even if software is completely vulnerability-free, misconfiguration can still introduce security holes.

Larry Yuan

What encouraged you to join Cybertitan?

I’ve always been very interested in Cybersecurity, starting in middle school with web security. Last year, I was invited to the team by Lev, the former team leader. I thought that it would be interesting to learn more about operating system security. At the time, I didn’t know much about Windows or Linux and have since learned a lot. The more I learn, the more questions I ask, which in turn helps me better understand the world of technology.

How has CyberTitan changed your perspective on the importance of Cybersecurity?

I’ve always been an advocate of good Cybersecurity practices and always will be. I think Cybertitan has taught me a lot about how to administrate systems and the challenges that systems administrators face. It has certainly helped me understand new classes of vulnerabilities and has helped to widen my perspective on Cybersecurity in general.

Evan Zhang

What encouraged you to join Cybertitan?

I joined CyberTitan because I was interested in securing my servers. I also found this competition a great way to experience new tools that I would never have thought about touching before.

How has CyberTitan changed your perspective on the importance of Cybersecurity?

I’ve always known the importance of Cybersecurity, but system hardening has always felt like one of those things that was trivial to properly do. It never felt like something that should be given too much attention. CyberTitan has shown to me the true difficulties of properly securing a system. A single misconfiguration could cause catastrophic damage, which is shown through CyberTitan’s practice images. Now, I know more about the importance of system hardening, and how to “properly” secure a system.