Regis University to host its ninth cybersecurity competition

Two-day event simulates business scenario cyberattack


Regis University will host the Rocky Mountain Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (RMCCDC) March 6 and 7 at its Denver Tech Center campus – the ninth year for both the competition and the University’s hosting. 
The competition allows teams to test their cybersecurity skills, knowledge and abilities. The top-performing team will represent the Rocky Mountain region at the national competition in April in Orlando, Florida.  

A preliminary qualifying round held in January narrowed the competition to the top eight teams: Brigham Young University, LDS Business College, Red Rocks Community College, University of Colorado Boulder, US Air Force Academy, Utah Valley University, University of New Mexico and Southern Utah State.   

The goal of this event is to choose the team with the best skills to move forward to the national event, said Bob Bowles, director of Regis’ Center for Information Assurance Studies and who helped organize the event. 

“A unique aspect of RMCCDC is that it focuses on the team defending a simulated business against a cyberattack while keeping their business operational. This is as close to real world as it gets,” Bowles said. 

Starting Friday morning, teams will be briefed about a business scenario, given computers, printers and other electronic equipment as well as the applications and internet services needed to run a simulated business. Each team will attempt to secure its business from cyberattacks waged by a team of 30 crafty volunteers attempting to break into the systems throughout the two-day event. 

“We always try to throw in something unique each year,” Bowles said. “I can’t discuss what the scenario will be this year, although I’m sure the teams will find it interesting and beneficial.” 

While fending off cyberattacks from some of the area’s most talented penetration testers, the teams will have to simulate a normal workday, such as responding to a CEO’s sudden, deadline-driven request. 

The competition is supposed to be fun, but Bowles acknowledges students are pushed to their limits. 

“While we try to emphasize that our goal is to give them the opportunity to succeed at securing and managing a business environment in a fun and safe environment, the students get very wrapped up in it and want to do their best,” he said.  

The competition requires the support of about 100 volunteers, including nearly a dozen who designed and configured the environment as well as those who will role play during the event, score the teams and more. 

“The core group of volunteers have been working months on this,” Bowles said. “Most of them are Regis faculty, staff, students, and industry volunteers. They’re extremely dedicated. It would be impossible to do this without their help. They truly deserve my thanks and appreciation. I’m constantly amazed at how many volunteer hours they dedicate to this event.” 

The winning team will be announced at the event’s conclusion, around 4:30 p.m. Saturday. 


About Regis

Established in 1877, Regis University is a premier, globally engaged institution of higher learning in the Jesuit tradition that prepares leaders to live productive lives of faith, meaning and service. Regis University, one of 27 Jesuit universities in the nation, has three campus locations in the Denver-metro area and extensive online program offerings with more than 8,000 enrolled students.