The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), an agency of the US Department of Defense, announced the upcoming launch of its “AI Cyber Challenge” (AIxCC) at this year’s Black Hat conference. The two-year competition is aimed at smaller companies and individuals or teams who work and research in the field of AI-supported IT security and threat prevention.
According to DARPA, the goal is to drive innovation in this field and ultimately to create a “new generation of cyber security tools” that should also improve the protection of critical infrastructures. In the past, the US authority has launched several competitions to promote progress in important technical areas. More recently, this has included the “Subterranean Challenge” in robotics.
Attractive prize money: Participation is also financially worthwhile for winning teams.
Expert support & multi-million dollar prize money
For the current competition, DARPA is cooperating with large tech companies such as Google and Microsoft as well as the AI companies OpenAI and Anthropic. They should support the participants with their expertise. Also on board: the Open Source Security Foundation (OpenSSF), a project of the Linux Foundation, as a guide specifically for open source code.
In order to further fuel the joy of the research work, the authority has announced high prize money. Teams that finish in the top 5 at the AUxCC semi-finals will each receive $2 million. And in the final, another one and a half, three and four million US dollars are up for grabs for the top three. Up to seven companies, whose participation is based on proposals to a selection committee, will receive additional financial support for the duration of the competition so that they can concentrate fully on the research projects.
Participation & further information
AI researchers and IT security professionals who would like to participate in the AIxCC as individuals or teams (“Open Track”) can register for the challenge on the website from November 1st to December 15th, 2023. Companies wishing to receive the funding (“Funded Track”) must go through the aforementioned selection process: Proposals will be accepted by DARPA from August 17th to September 19th. Attention: Various restrictions and conditions apply to the participation opportunities for teams and individuals as non-US citizens, which can be found in the “Rules” section of the website.
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