Register now to take part in the seventh edition of CyberCenturion! 

Back for the seventh year running, CyberCenturion is the ideal way for 12-18 years old in the UK to learn new skills and start building their foundations to get ready for the next chapter of their lives.

So many competitors from previous years have gone on to launch their careers within cybersecurity or study STEM subjects in higher education. And it’s not just about work and study – feedback tells us year on year that CyberCenturion supports the development of essential life skills too. The competition isn’t just about cyber; as many competitors have put their CyberCenturion experience into practice across all kinds of different industries.

As you embark on your first or next experience of CyberCenturion, we want to ensure you have all you need to make the most of the opportunity.  It’s all about getting organised, building strong team morale and having fun if you’re planning to reach the National Finals (and be in with a chance to win that once in a lifetime trip to the US with competition sponsors, Northrop Grumman).

Ex-finalist Rhiannon Fairweather spoke to the team to share her experiences and pass the baton to the next generation of competitors and team leaders. 

Tip 1 – Use Those Practice Rounds

After you register for CyberCenturion, you’ll be invited and encouraged to engage with the practice rounds, to help set up your environment and to prepare for what’s next.

It’s so important to make the most of that time and not to discount those practice rounds just because you’ve taken part in CyberCenturion before. 

I guarantee that you’ll find something that will be hugely beneficial to you and your team that you otherwise might have missed. You’re not under the same time pressure in the practice rounds, after all. That makes a huge difference, as it allows you to work with more freedom. 

Tip 2 – If You’ve Got a Friend Who Knows the Ropes, Use Them! 

You’ll quickly identify someone in your team who has more advanced skills than the rest. Use them! They will be a fountain of knowledge and information that your whole team should be leveraging. 

Not only that, but when putting your team together, make sure you all get on well. You want to be able to just have a laugh and concentrate on competing rather than be trying to sort out arguments mid-competition. My advice is to pick a couple of your best friends who haven’t even thought about taking part, and showing them just how much fun it is to learn a brand new set of skills along the way.

Tip 3 – Worried that Your Team Leader Isn’t Technical? Don’t Be! 

Our team leader was our school’s ICT and Computer Science teacher. He had experience in computer science, but he had never worked within the cybersecurity industry. His main role was liaising with Cyber Security Challenge UK and passing information back to us. 

During the rounds, he kept in contact and made sure we were happy, focusing his time boosting our morale and offering ongoing support. 

All technical mentoring came more from another member of our team, Sam. Playing to each of our strengths as individuals that made up our team of four definitely helped us work our way to the Finals. 

Tip 4 – Winning Isn’t Everything

Have fun! This is an experience that you’ll always remember, and it’s so important to enjoy it. Yes, a lot of people will take it seriously, and it is a serious competition. But remember, winning isn’t everything. It’s what you take away from the whole experience that’s going to help you further down the road. 

If you’re thinking about taking part in the CyberCenturion this year, take a look at some of these useful resources.