CyberStart Game starts with puzzle solving and browser based challenges, but quickly pivots to provide access to real challenges, real security tools and environments. That means you need the right hardware and software, but sometimes access to equipment or security policies get in the way. Worry not we have solutions for both of these scenarios! Some students prefer to use their own devices which they are familiar with, where others need a way around it. We have covered both ways to play below!

Use my own hardware

  • Computer with VMware or Virtual Box (you can find instructions online which is great practice for students)
  • A reliable internet connection
  • Chrome or Firefox browser, updated for security and experience
  • Unrestricted access to browser developer tools/settings e.g. View Source or Inspect Element or scripting abilities

VMware or Virtual Box is needed in order to run the CyberStart Virtual Machine for Game. Early levels of Game do not require the virtual machine but you will need this to play beyond Level 5, and to try the forensics challenges. Using your own virtual machine and customising the environment is great practice.

Note: Many school computers have restrictions that limit access to the browser tools functions. Check with your school IT professional to see if these blocks can be temporarily lifted if you’re going to do this at school, or plan to use unrestricted equipment, like home computers or computers at public libraries, for the more advanced challenges. If this is not possible, you have an alternative as covered below.

Use a browser based platform

We have partnered with NDG labs to provide a 100% online portal. We are  proud to say that CyberStart is compatible with Chromebooks and other devices such as an iPad or Windows Surface. That means using their wonderful platform you can participate on any device you have, even if you can't run your own security tools!

You can access the platform at https://www.netdevgroup.com/online/content/sans/ and sign up right away to get going. Remember, you can still do lots of the first challenge in CyberStart with just a web browser.

If you still have unanswered questions, please let do not hesitate to contact us at hello@cyberstartamerica.org