DC CTF Details

July 21, 2022


Date: August 13th, 2022

Time: 10:30am to 2:30pm Pacific Standard Time (Las Vegas local time)

Cost: Free

Attendance Required: No. Contestants can be in-person or virtual

‍# of Tickets Available: TBD

Platform: https://searchparty.tracelabs.org

Registration: https://searchparty.tracelabs.org/register

Communications: https://tracelabs.org/discord

Training Materials: 

Platform Demo

Contestant Briefing


What is a Search Party CTF?

For a more detailed breakdown of how our CTFs work. Check out the dedicated page on our website along with the accompanying Contestant and Judge guides.


How do I sign up for the CTF?

We’re excited to see you all live. With that being said, preference, or “first dibs”, will be given to in-person sign ups.

The Trace Labs team will be live in the DEF CON contest area on Friday August 12th conducting in-person signups. We’ll have a table where you can stop by to get your registration code (and free swag!) that will act as your “ticket” to compete in the CTF

On Friday evening (Las Vegas time) we will release the remaining tickets via our Eventbrite page.


Once you have your registration code (either from in-person signup or virtually through Eventbrite) the process of getting on the CTF platform will flow as it always has. Please see our training playlist for more information:


What do I need to do before the event?

We will be recording a “Contestant Briefing” for you to view the week of the event. This will show you around the platform, walk you through some common CTF scenarios, lay out the rules of the CTF and answer frequently asked questions. We would normally run this demo live before the CTF but we’ll unfortunately be tied up DEFCONing.

Before the event, you'll need to watch our recorded Contestant Briefing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dYdQIiMzRlI

What if my team is a mix of in-person and virtual?

The section above still applies. Only one registration code will be given out per person during in-person signups. If part of your team is virtual, they’ll have to take their chances getting a remaining ticket via Eventbrite that evening.

Do I need a team to compete?

No. You can compete solo or on a team of up to 4 people.

How do I get a team together?

The details of creating or joining a team on our CTF platform can be found in our training playlist: 


As for actually finding people to compete with…this will be up to you. Closer to the event, we’ll stand up a dedicated match making channel in our Discord server but we don’t have a formal mechanism to “match” people up with a team to compete with.

Are there prizes?  

Yes. However, expect the prize packages to look different than previous events. We’re continuing to evolve the contest with an emphasis on quality of intelligence over quantity of intelligence. As we get closer to the event we’ll be sharing the details of prizes here and on our Eventbrite page. 

How else can I get involved?

The contest depends on volunteer “judges” vetting the intel coming in real time. Without these volunteers we wouldn’t be able to host these events. This is a great way to sharpen your OSINT skills and network within our community. You can find more information about volunteering to be a judge here:


Update to the Flags and Categories for the DEF CON CTF

We've made some changes to the CTF. If you've competed before, these are worth going over.



New to OSINT? Where to begin?

Trace Labs Discord: https://tracelabs.org/discord

Trace Labs Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/TraceLabsVideos

A free course on People OSINT from Joe Gray: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EePeB9A2ZAk

Google: Seriously. Just type “OSINT” into your search engine and see what pops up. Other helpful search terms could include: “SOCMINT”, “Sock Puppet Account”, “People OSINT” and “Open Source Intelligence”

Github “Awesome OSINT” repo: https://github.com/jivoi/awesome-osint

OSINT resources from _OhShint: https://ohshint.gitbook.io/oh-shint-its-a-blog/

OSINT resources from Belouve: https://github.com/belouve/osint-resource 

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