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OSINT CTF Victory Lap: GrrCON 2015

The three of us had not entered GrrCON with anticipation of entering any events. One of our team members, Mike, had signed up to compete in the OSINT CTF after seeing the prizes available to the winners at the CG Silvers Consulting booth. There was a group of us there from the same school. Mike soon tried convincing two other classmates to come join him on a team. After some convincing of how much fun it would be, we had a team. None of us had ever competed in an OSINT CTF, but we were ready to take on the unknown.

When we started the competition Saturday morning, we were introduced to our two targets of which we would be gathering intelligence. There were five rounds to the competition, each progressively more challenging. Starting out in stage one; we faced simple questions about the targets such as what was their Twitter handle or where did they attend college. By the time we reached stages four and five, we were deep into the targets lives. The answers to these questions could not be found through simple google searches or scraping of their Facebook pages. Examples of some of the more difficult questions were, “This person had a relative who was rumored to have sailed with Mark Twain. What is the first, middle, and last name of this person?” and “What programming language did Chris use to write an application that he used for his Master’s thesis?” The one thing that really helped us out in the latter stages was to keep in mind all of the previous questions that we had answered. There were times that previous answers were pieces of a harder puzzle that we need to solve later in the game. It was a lot of detective work. To answer many of the harder questions, we had to take information from different sources, tie it together, and then start a new search based on those criteria.

This competition was an awesome experience that was well put together. The level difficulty was perfect for any skill level. We definitely plan to return next year to defend our title.

Two Men and a Hooker

Mike Buitendorp

Josh Hooker

Nick Davis


First Place: ​

  • A GrrCON Black Badge for free lifetime entry.

  • A HAK5 Wifi Pineapple Tetra. Details here.

  • A Husban X4 Quadcopter with FPV Camera. Details here​.

Second Place:

  • A HAK5 Wifi Pineapple Nano. Details here.

  • A Husban X4 Quadcopter with FPV Camera. Details here​.

Third Place:

  • A HAK5 USB Rubber Ducky. Details here.

  • A Husban X4 Quadcopter with FPV Camera. Details here​.

Other Prizes:

  • HAK5 Wifi Pineapple Nano

  • HAK5 Rubber Ducky

  • Raspberry Pi 0

  • HAK5 LAN Turtle

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