Tag Archives: Automated network defense tournament

DARPA Cyber Grand Challenge (CGC)

DARPA launched the Cyber Grand Challenge (CGC) in 2014. This is a competition in which each competitor team attempts to create an automatic IT network defense system that can analyze its own performance during attacks by an intelligent adversaries, identify security flaws, formulate patches, and deploy the patches in real-time on the network being protected. This DARPA competition will “give these groundbreaking prototypes a league of their own, allowing them to compete head-to-head to defend a network of bespoke software.”

The longer-term DARPA goal is to promote technology that leads to operational, automatic, scalable, adaptive, network defense systems operating at machine speed to protect IT networks against intelligent adversaries.

The CGC Challenge Competitor Portal is at the following link:


The Master Schedule for CGC is shown in the following chart:

CGC Master ScheduleSource: DARPA

A slide presentation reporting the lessons learned from the first year of the CGC is available at the following link:


This is a complex slide presentation that benefits greatly from seeing it along with a video of the actual presentation made by Mike Walker at the 12 – 14 August 2015 24th USENIX Security Symposium. You will find this rather long (1 hour 17 min) video at the following link:


In the 2015 Challenge Qualification Event, seven finalists were qualified. The finals will be held from 54 August 2016 at the Paris Hotel & Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Award Ceremony will be held at the beginning of DEF CON 24 on Friday, 5 August 2016.

CGCEventFirstAutomatedNetDefense  Source: DARPA

This is exciting stuff! The results are certain to be very interesting.

8 August 2016 Update: Carnegie Mellon’s Mayhem computer system won DARPA’s CGC

Seven invited teams competed for $4 million in prizes at the DARPA CGC. The $2 million grand prize winner was the Mayhem computer system designed by Carnegie Mellon’s team ForAllSecure. The $1 million second place prize was awarded to the Xandra computer system designed by team TECHx of Ithaca, NY, and Charlottesville, VV. Third place and a $750K prize was awarded to the Mechanical Phish computer system developed by the Shellphish team of Santa Barbara, CA.

You can read details on the DARPA website at the following link:


Also see the following article on the TechCrunch website for more details on the CGC Finals competition.