A Nordic-Baltic cyber battle to be held in Tartu

On 11 November, a Nordic-Baltic cyber battle – a “capture-the-flag competition”, as the organisers call it, is to be held in Tartu, Estonia, for 15-24-year-old cyber security enthusiasts from the Nordic and Baltic countries.

This article is published in partnership with CTF Tech.

The competition is organised by an Estonian cyber-education start-up CTF Tech and utilities cyber range by CybExer Technologies, a NATO-awarded Estonian cyber security company.

According to the organisers, the “Cyber Battle of Nordics-Baltics is an annual capture the flag competition that brings together teams of 15-24 years old cyber security enthusiasts from the Nordic and Baltic countries to Estonian university town, Tartu. It provides participants with a unique opportunity to test their skills, collaborate with peers and showcases their abilities under intense pressure.”

The Cyber Battle of Estonia in 2021. Photo by CTF Tech.

The competition unfolds through multiple stages, each designed to test different aspects of a team’s cyber security capabilities. Scenarios presented to the participants encompass a wide range of challenges, including network intrusion, malware analysis, cryptography, reverse engineering and incident response.

“As teams strive to overcome these challenges, they must demonstrate not only technical prowess but also critical thinking, teamwork and the ability to make quick and informed decisions under time constraints,” the organisers said in a statement.

Encouraging the participants to work together

The competition has its emphasis on collaboration and innovation.

“Rather than promoting a solely competitive environment, the participants are encouraged to work together, share knowledge and leverage their diverse skill sets to overcome complex challenges. This collaborative approach fosters an environment of mutual learning, allowing participants to acquire new strategies, techniques and tools in the fight against cyber threats and score more points than the other teams.”

Red Racoon team at the Cyber Battle of Estonia 2021. Photo by Gabriela Urm.

At the same time, a side event called Cybercation is organised exclusively for educators, IT teachers, representatives of educational organisations, youth specialists, cyber education enthusiasts, civil servants, policy makers and businesses.

The cyber battle is to be held in cooperation with Telia, a large Nordic telecommunications company, and also with Tartu’s town council, the University of Tartu and a number of companies from the private sector.

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