Terms of Attendance

Guiding Principles

Cyber Fire events feel different than most Capture The Flag exercises, because we focus on education.

Mistakes are important
We’ve found people learn best when they try things outside their comfort zone, so we do everything we can to create an environment where participants feel safe to make mistakes. Everyone is expected to treat their own mistakes, and those of other participants, as both positive and inevitable.
There are no prizes
We want the focus to be on learning, not on how to win the prize. We don’t allow any sort of prizes at our events.
Events should feel fair
The team who does the most successful work should place on top. This steers a whole lot of other decisions we make. For instance, we don’t give bonuses for being quick, and we don’t give penalties for wrong answers. We also don’t run categories where starting late makes it impossible to catch up, like getting a point for every minute your team holds a “flag”. What we are trying to award points for is whether your team has worked out a solution, and nothing more.
We expect creative mayhem
As a security analyst, you have to think like a “bad guy” in order to better understand what attacks might come next. We want you to be creative in your approach to solving puzzles, but we do have a few ground rules, mostly related to everybody having a good experience, and limiting the expense of running events.

Respect Our Policies

In order to achieve our education goals, we have set up a few rules. We reserve the right to kick anyone out of our event for any reason, but there are a few things that might be okay in other places which aren’t okay at Cyber Fire events.

Harassment is not allowed
Cyber Fire does not tolerate harassment of participants in any form. Our full anti-harassment policy can be consulted if you need it.
Network-level attacks are not allowed
SYN flooding, ARP cache poisoning, WiFi deauthentication, and other network-level attacks are not allowed. These are important techniques to understand and play with, but Cyber Fire events are not set up for this.
Attacking other participants’ computers is not allowed
We have put a lot of effort into making the puzzles fun to attack. Go after those instead.

Dress Code

Cyber Fire’s official dress code is “Geek Casual”. “Casual” means different things in different places. For example, shorts are fine in Southern California, but will be out of place at events closer to Washington, DC.

If an event has a special dress code, we will mention this on the event’s page.

Example Outfits

The following outfits would fit in at any of our events:

  • Jeans, T-shirt (simple graphic or solid color), sweater, sneakers
  • Skirt, blouse, casual flats
  • Khakis, polo shirt, casual loafers

US indoor spaces can frequently be conditioned below 68°F/20°C, and you will be sitting still for 120+ minutes at a time. Warm clothing is advised for indoors.

In winter, many US locations will experience freezing temperatures and snow. Please check forecasts before you depart, and pack suitable clothing for going outdoors.

All Policy Documents