Deadline looms for second UK Linux security challenge

The government- and Sophos-sponsored challenge is designed to drum up interest in learning Linux security skills, which are needed for protecting web infrastructure and, in turn, companies

Hackers are being invited to take part in a Linux security challenge next week that is sponsored by the UK government and Sophos.

The government has been running a Cyber Security Challenge (CSC) scheme since 2010, in an attempt to draw more young people into the computer security business.

The first Linux-focused challenge took place last year, and registrations for the next one, beginning on 27 August, close at noon on Wednesday.

The web is by far the main vector for those looking to attack companies. Most web infrastructure around the world is based on Linux, but most schools don't teach pupils how to use the operating system.

This makes Linux security skills quite valuable, and Sophos is pitching the contest as a good way to demonstrate such skills and impress potential employers.

"There have been some steps towards improving the ICT curriculum in schools but we can no longer stick our heads in the sand," Sophos technology strategy director James Lyne said in a statement on Monday.

"The web is the main tool used by cyber-criminals to target both business and consumers so we still need to do much, much more to teach vital skills like Linux programming in schools and universities and to nurture the young Linux generation," he added.

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