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TCS HackQuest for 2022 and 2023 Batch | B.Tech/M.Tech/BCA/MCA/BSc/MSc – All Disciplines

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TCS HackQuest started in 2016 as an earnest attempt to unearth specific talents who exceled in playing their favorite game – Catch the Flag! Based on the popular ‘Catch the Flag’ (CTF) format, the contest presents a set of challenges to be completed in 6 hours. Each challenge evaluates their ethical hacking skills and their special competency in finding vulnerabilities. In the end, associates are awarded with special prizes and potential job offers from TCS in the Cyber Security Unit.

TCS HackQuest

The Contest TCS HackQuest

HackQuest started in 2016 as an earnest attempt to unearth specific talents who exceled in playing their favorite game – Catch the Flag! Based on the popular ‘Catch the Flag’ (CTF) format, the contest presents a set of challenges to be completed in 6 hours. Each challenge evaluates their ethical hacking skills and their special competency in finding vulnerabilities. In the end, associates are awarded with special prizes and potential job offers from TCS in the Cyber Security Unit.

Participation

The contest is open for the 2022 and 2023 batch of B.Tech / M.Tech / BCA / MCA / BSc / MSc from all disciplines and all the relevant institutes in India.

Discipline for TCS HackQuest:

Students from all IT & Computer Science related disciplines with bachelor’s or master’s degree are eligible for the contest provided that they meet the TCS recruitment criteria. Candidates trained in Security domains as listed below would be given more preference:

  • Application Security
  • Network Security
  • Java/J2EE, php, python. GO
  • Information security and risk management
  • Ethical Hacking
  • Any Security specific certification like Security+, CEH, ISO 27001, etc.

Participation Guidelines for TCS HackQuest

  • This event is conducted in two rounds. First round is an online Catch the Flag competition where all registered students can participate, and they will be shortlisted for further sub-rounds.
  • Participants shortlisted after Round 1 will move to Round 2, where they may be interviewed over Video Call/MS Teams/Webex by the TCS Cyber Security interview panel.
  • This is an individual contest. No team participation is permitted.
  • Once the contest registration begins, all interested and eligible participants will be required to register for the contest on https://www.tcshackquest.com with a valid CT/DT ID. To create a valid CT/DT ID, participant will have to login to TCS NextStep Portal, click on Register in the IT segment (Not BPS), fill in the fields and submit. The candidate will receive a pop-up with their CT/DT ID.
  • Entries submitted after the registration end-date will not be considered for evaluation.
  • For the first round, to login to the portal and access the challenges, we recommend the below mentioned specifications
    1. Desktop/Laptop with minimum of 1024*768 screen resolution
    2. Internet connectivity of not less than 1 Mbps Speed
    3. Browsers: Latest version of Firefox or Chrome
    4. Burp Suite community edition
  • For the second round, to login to the portal and access the challenges, below mentioned minimum specifications are recommended
    1. Desktop/Laptop with minimum of 1024*768 screen resolution
    2. Internet connectivity of not less than 1 Mbps Speed
    3. Browsers: Latest version of Firefox or Chrome
    4. Burp Suite community edition
    5. Web Camera
    6. Webex or Microsoft Teams
  • TCS will arrange for remote modalities of evaluating a select list of contestants from the 1st round. Contestants should stay tuned for real-time updates on round 2, dates, format etc.

Registration Steps for TCS HackQuest

  • Any number of students can register for the contest. Participants should be above 18 years of age and would have completed their graduation in the Academic year of 2021-2022 or 2022-2023 only.
  • Students can participate in this contest after registering in TCS’ NextStep Portal – TCS NextStep to generate a CT/DT ID in the IT Segment (Not BPS). Remember: (CT)/ Direct Trainee (DT) Reference Number is mandatory for participating in the contest.
  • Each participant who has registered to participate in Hackquest will be receiving a unique credential to take part in the contest. This credential is of utmost importance and should not be shared with other participants.
  • Registration Start Date – 11th Nov 2022
  • Registration End Date – 1st Jan 2023

Round 1 of TCS HackQuest

  • This will be an online test, where the candidates would be required to log on to an online application with a set of challenges / questions to test their skills on ethical hacking and their specific competency in security challenges. The URL of the application will be shared before the contest.
  • The contest is of 6 hours long in which all the participants are required to use their skills to solve the challenges and submit the Flags captured in the online portal.
  • Post to completion of solving a challenge, participants need to capture a screenshot of the Flag with timestamp visible and prepare a detailed report in the template provided with a step-by-step approach for solving a particular challenge.
  • This report should be uploaded on the hackquest portal before the deadline as mentioned.
  • Uploading of this report to the hackquest portal is mandatory and any participant failing to upload the report will NOT be considered for further evaluation. This will result in automatic disqualification of the candidate for that edition of HackQuest as well. Please also make sure that the report is original and does not match with another contestant in which case, both contestants would be rendered ineligible for further editions of HackQuest.
  • Maximum size of the report should not be more than 6MB.
  • Participants are free to use tools for their choice. Using of tools which sends huge amount of traffic or tampering with the App which hosts the challenges is strictly prohibited. If any participant is found violating this, he/she will be disqualified immediately from the remainder of the contest.

The evaluation will be based on:

  • Flags captured
  • Quality of the report submitted
  • Approach followed for capturing the flags

Round 1 Date: 7th Jan 2023 Round 1 Results Announcement Date: 13th Jan 2023 (Tentative) Round 2 Dates: 6th & 7th Feb 2023 (Tentative)

Round 2 of TCS HackQuest:

(The below instructions are based on virtual mode, incase we are planning for physical event – instructions to be changed)

  • Candidates selected from Round 1, based on above-mentioned evaluation criteria will be invited for a remotely conducted additional round, which will be communicated to shortlisted candidates later.

Day 1 at TCS HackQuest:

Activity 1: Penetration testing on hosted challenges

This would be an individual activity. The candidates would be provided with some challenges, which each participant is expected to solve by using their advanced skills. Challenges in this round cover below mentioned topics:

  • System exploitation
  • Penetration testing of web Applications
  • Mobile security
  • Digital forensics
  • Incident Response
  • Source Code Analysis Scoring will be based on the flags captured by the participants in above mentioned topics.

Activity 2: HR & MR Interviews (3-4 hours) – Remotely

Day 2 at TCS HackQuest:

Grand Finale Ceremony (1-2 hours) – The event will be conducted virtually (Physically – to be confirmed).

Winner Announcement of TCS HackQuest:

  • The top performing candidates who clear Round 2 stand a chance to receive Ninja or Digital job offers. (Evaluation will be based on your performance only).
  • Winners will be awarded with exciting prizes worth up to 5 Lakhs.
  • Exceptional performers will be given chance to work with Centre of Excellence teams.

References for tools:

Download Sites:

How to Apply  For TCS HackQuest?

All interested and eligible candidates can apply for TCS HackQuest online by the following link as soon as possible.

To Register for TCS HackQuest Contest : Click here

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