AUGUSTA (WFXG) - 62 Teams, nine Countries, one objective. That’s the premise of the AFCEA Capture the Flag Challenge hosted by Parsons. The competition teaches military and aspiring cybersecurity professionals more than just a win or loss.

Cyber security is dynamic. Whether you’re an industry expert, servicemember or a student, there’s always a learning curve. That's why Parsons says opportunities, such as this competition, matter.

“We all really need to be able to cooperate with each other to communicate, be able to pass information so we can counter threats that show up," said Thomas Barnes, Vice President of Strategic Cyber Initiatives.

This event marked the third annual International Capture the Flag Cyber Challenge. Teams represented included Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Netherlands, Israel, Japan, Taiwan and the United States. While some competed in person at the Georgia Cyber Center, most did so remotely. They faced categories like reverse engineering, networking and cryptography to name a few. However, collaboration proved an important part of this Jeopardy-style competition.

“They should be able to take that and port that back to their own military environment where they, you know, where they’re going to work in teams with each other to solve conflicts, problems.” said Barnes.

It’s a concept that crosses language barriers and borders, especially for Liaison Officer Komoko Nishimur.

“In the cyber world, we have the common technique, the common mind, to deepen our techniques so not only one nation but all nations, we should collaborate,” said Nishimur.

Plus, the Deputy Commanding General at the Cyber Center of Excellence says we’re going to need these skills as our cyber world continues to advance.

“Capture the Flag is a great example of taking young minds, some of the best and brightest in the world, and putting them together an on the fly problem solve issues within the cyber domain. From that, we’re going to be able to harvest those future cyber leaders to help sustain us into the future,” said Deputy Commanding General Johanna Clyborne, Cyber Center of Excellence.

This year, Taiwan came out on top. Fort Gordon officials say the United States typically comes out in the top three. However, that was not the case this year.

Meanwhile, Parsons hopes to expand this competition and have more in the future.

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