Protecting user security and privacy is a huge responsibility, and software security is a big part of it. Learning about new ways to break applications is important, but learning preventative skills to use when building software, like secure design and coding practices, is just as critical. To help promote secure development habits, Google is once again partnering with the organizers of SyScan to host Hardcode, a secure coding contest on the Google App Engine platform.
Participation will be open to teams of up to 5 full-time students (undergraduate or high school). Contestants will be asked to develop open source applications that meet a set of functional and security requirements. The contest will consist of two rounds: a qualifying round over the Internet, with broad participation from any team of students, and a final round, to be held during SyScan on April 23-25 in Singapore.
During the qualifying round, teams will be tasked with building an application and describing its security design. A panel of judges will assess all submitted applications and select the top five to compete in the final round.
At SyScan, the five finalist teams will be asked to develop a set of additional features and fix any security flaws identified in their qualifying submission. After two more days of hacking, a panel of judges will rank the projects and select a grand prize winning team that will receive $20,000 Singapore dollars. The 2nd-5th place finalist teams will receive $15,000, $10,000, $5,000, and $5,000 Singapore dollars, respectively.
Hardcode begins on Friday, January 18th. Full contest details will be be announced via our mailing list, so subscribe there for more information!