Launch Of HITB+CyberWeek To Drive A Cyber Smart World.

Hack In The Box (HITB), known for its cutting-edge technical talks and trainings in computer security, is launching its biggest global event to be held in Abu Dhabi, UAE from 12-17 October 2019. HITB+CyberWeek will bring together the world’s top thinkers and cyber security experts to share their latest knowledge, ideas and techniques among security professionals but also students.

Dhillon Kannabhiran, Founder and CEO of Hack in the Box said, “We live in a digital world that’s changing fast. To solve the next generation of cyber security problems, we need to act now in developing the next generation of cyber security warriors.”

“We need to change the way we teach students – to be less formulaic and to use more hands-on creative problem solving through real world cyber security challenges. That’s why we’re bringing more than just our cutting edge talks and trainings for professionals to HITB+CyberWeek – we’re also developing specific content and challenges for the wider student population.”

Cyber Battle of the Emirates: Capture the Flag competition for the best and brightest students

HTIB+CyberWeek will feature a bootcamp for young cyber warriors to jump-start their hacker journey with Cyber Battle of the Emirates – a training program and Capture the Flag competition that will see the winners of Belgium and Germany’s Cyber Security Challenge battling it out against the UAE’s best and brightest.

“Cyber Battle of the Emirates will be open to all high school and university students studying in the UAE. The winners from this 2-day contest will win a trip to HITB Amsterdam in 2020 and also able to compete with the professional teams in the Pro Capture the Flag at HITB+CyberWeek to be in the running to win US$100,000 in cash,” said Dhillon.

There’s plenty for seasoned security professionals at the event in Abu Dhabi with the ‘best of the best’ speakers and deep knowledge sharing through training labs. Then there’s the competitions.

Driven2Pwn: UAE’s first bug bounty event and special training for students

“We’re launching some world firsts at HITB+CyberWeek. For starters, we’re bringing the best bug hunters and ethical hackers to one destination: Abu Dhabi. This will be the UAE’s first bug bounty bazaar. Called Driven2Pwn, the best bounty hunters from around the world will be invited to exploit a variety of targets with a range of cash pots in a combined US$1.5 million pool.”

“We’re also inviting various industry partners to host their own bounty programs alongside ours so it will be a one-stop bounty event organized by HITB, VXRL and Vulnerability Labs. Competitors can compete as a team or as an individual hunter and there are no limits to the number of categories or bounties that can be entered. It’s one event with many bounties – a bug bounty bazaar,” said Dhillon.

The vulnerabilities will be duly disclosed to the affected vendors who will be informed of the findings and given sufficient time to issue patches before these issues are disclosed publicly. There will also be a bonus category for UAE bug hunters plus a special bug hunting training course crafted for undergraduate and post-graduate students. In the HITB tradition of sharing knowledge freely, this training course will be free on a first come, first served basis.

AI Challenge: Developing future cyber security tools using machine learning

Artificial Intelligence and deep learning are revolutionizing all industries and the cyber security industry is no exception. Changing times calls for changing tactics and machine learning is going to be at the center of all things cyber security. To stay one step ahead, we need to think differently.

“We have a bold ambition: to accelerate progress in automated cyber defense processes and contribute to the development of the first generation of autonomous and real-time machine models applied to cyber security problems. We’ve created two security challenges for post-graduate and undergraduate students because we want to spur the development in this area, but more importantly, we want to challenge those who like solving complex problems,” said Dhillon.

The first challenge – with US$50,000 in prize money – is to teach your AI to hack, by developing an automated penetration testing model based on the DeepExploit framework. Competitors will be expected to develop a fully automated penetration testing tool using deep learning/machine learning with capabilities including intelligence gathering, threat modelling, vulnerability analysis, exploits analysis, blue team exploitation and more.

The second challenge, also with a US$50,000 prize on offer, is to detect constantly evolving malware by building ‘the future of malware detection engines’ with an agent-based learner, developed on MalwareEnv for OpenAIGym.

Pro Capture The Flag (CTF): Best 25 CTF teams battle it out for US$100,000

With a record-breaking prize pool of US$100,000, 25 of the world’s best CTF teams will be flown into Abu Dhabi to battle it out in a three-day attack and defense CTF competition with an Internet of Things (IoT) real world hacking bonus category. Organized by HITB in collaboration with Hackerdom, Russia’s leading Capture The Flag organizing crew, the CTF will pit winning teams from various other contests to prove definitively that they are the best in the world. A new contest visualization system is also
being developed to make it easier for spectators to understand the challenges teams will face while completing the 3-day contest.

“With HITB security conference events in Amsterdam, Singapore, and UAE, we believe we’re breaking down the boundaries between regions and creating the right environment for a fascinating mix of ideas, networking among like-minded people, and most importantly the sharing of knowledge. Let’s face it: our digital world has no boundaries and we believe there should be no limits to the way we collaborate, the way we share research and how we train the next generation of cyber warriors. Next generation problems need next-generation ideas, solutions and skills. A hacker mindset is critical to this,” said Dhillon.

About ‘Hack in the Box’ Hack In The Box (HITB) is a series of network security and hacking related conferences held annually around the world. HITB conferences offer cutting-edge hardcore technical talks delivered by some of the most respected names in the computer security industry. Held annually in Asia, Europe, and now the Middle East they are among the foremost platforms for the discussion and dissemination of next generation cyber computer security issues. HITB+CyberWeek will bring together the world’s top thinkers and cyber security experts to share their latest knowledge, ideas and techniques among security professionals and students for a week long gathering together in Abu Dhabi, UAE.