picoCTF logo with red and lavender theme.

picoCTF runs their annual two-week capture the flag ‘hacking’ competition March 16-30, 2021. In this contest, participants need to overcome a set of challenges from six domains of cybersecurity including general skills, cryptography, web exploitation, forensics, etc. picoCTF is not only a fun way to expose cybersecurity concepts, but players also learn new skills and refine existing skills utilizing hundreds of cybersecurity challenge problems of increasing difficulty.

The program can be played by individuals at their own pace through self-learning by leveraging our web-based education content, or on teams of up to five learners on personal computers, school provided tablets, or more affordable and widely available raspberry pie machines. The open-source platform features a batch registration tool and a virtual classroom feature where teachers/team leaders can register students/team mates then monitor their progress. picoCTF requires no additional software to participate though an internet connection is necessary. The picoCTF project is interdisciplinary in nature and can be attractive to learners from varying backgrounds.

picoCTF is a free online program designed to facilitate cybersecurity education for learners of all ages and skill levels from middle school through college and into professional sectors. In 2013, CMU started picoCTF to set out to expose cybersecurity concepts to students as early as possible in a fun and secure environment, thereby attracting them to develop their talents and explore cybersecurity as a profession in the future. Since then, picoCTF.org has gained popularity with middle-high school teachers, college students, and industry professionals.