1 – Increase your skills in secure development
As you can imagine, one of the first benefits is going to be the improvement or even the acquisition of skills in application security . Indeed, all these challenges are intended to make you understand flaws and attack techniques. You will therefore have to improve your skills on these various elements and acquire a good understanding, you will then be able to test the flaws in your codes , but also to correct your codes . You should even be able to limit the number of flaws in the codes you produce.
These acquired advantages are not at all negligible for your professional career and for your employer, since we still consider that 90% of web applications have at least one flaw. And you will learn that with certain language such as PHP, you very easily leave a lot of critical flaws in your codes.
2 – Global understanding and debugging
The second thing it will do for you is to improve your debugging skills and a much better understanding of the overall functioning of the systems you are working on. I realized that very often web development students had never played with browser headers or even opened a frame analyzer. Result ? A very poor understanding of their environments on what they can do or even on the elements that a hacker could modify to harm your application.
You will understand if you increase your understanding, debugging your applications will be simplified. Since I regularly do security challenges I have considerably improved my debugging skills and you will see it quickly too if you start these exercises. You will be able to improve your debugging processes to gain speed and simply set up bug replay. You will be able to better understand some bug and also improve your ability to create a real test game, in particular by adding classic attacks to see if your application involves risks.
These skills will also allow you to better understand the encoding and string management issues that can drive you crazy at times!
3 – Don’t limit yourself to development challenges
What is very important is not to limit yourself to challenges directly associated with development, but to try all the challenges . Indeed by going to carry out exercises on the networks or even on forensic you will acquire very important knowledge. It will be the same for the challenges having for subject cryptography , you will gain understanding in these fields and you will see that the implementation of cryptographic library will be much easier thereafter !
They will help you better understand the implications of the network in your applications, but also once again help you improve your debugging .
We hope we have convinced you of the merits of participating in these IT security challenges, to do so you can find specialized websites such as: RootMe , NewbieContest , WeChall . Or participate in competitions in a limited time that we call CTF you will find on the site ctftime.org whether they are participating online or in physics .