Registration for State Sponsored Cyber Security Competition Underway

Posted on Dec 18, 2019 in Featured, News, Press Release
Winners of the 2019 Girls Go CyberStart Competition

Winners of the 2019 Girls Go CyberStart Competition were recognized by Gov. Ige during Cyber Security Month in Hawaii.


HONOLULU — Governor David Y. Ige is encouraging young women, grades 9-12, to take advantage of an opportunity to explore the cybersecurity and computer science fields by trying to solve the challenges of the 2020 Girls Go CyberStart program. The state is partnering with the SANS Institute to bring the Girls Go CyberStart program to Hawaiʻi.

“This free and fun program gives young women in our state the opportunity to discover if they have an interest in cybersecurity or computer science through challenges, tools and games,” said Gov. David Ige.

Participating students (and their teachers) do not need knowledge or experience in information technology or cybersecurity to participate. All that is required is a computer and an Internet connection. The program is free for schools and students.

Hawaii’s 2019 winners are teams from Myron B. Thompson Academy, first place; St. Andrews Schools, second place; and Seabury Hall, third place.  Finalists in the competition are teams from Sacred Hearts Academy, Kapolei High School and Keaau High School.

“Women represent just 20 percent of the global cyber security workforce and this is a terrific opportunity for girls to learn more about the industry in an educational and fun setting,” said Vincent Hoang, Office of Enterprise Technology Services Chief Information Security Officer.

Participants use the CyberStart Game, an online series of challenges that allow students to act as cyber protection agents to solve cybersecurity-related puzzles and explore exciting, relevant topics such as cryptography and digital forensics.

High schools where at least five girls in the Girls Go CyberStart Program who master six or more of the challenges will win access to the full CyberStart Game for their entire school, extending the competition to both male and female students for the remainder of the school year. Students will also have the opportunity to win cash prizes for themselves and their schools.  This year, at least 10 Hawaii high school girls will each get $500 scholarships to help them pay for college.

Registration starts now (began on Dec. 2) to January 31, 2020.

Register online at

To see the types of challenges the students will face in the games, please visit

Girls Go CyberStart by the numbers:

  • 476 girls from 34 Hawaii high schools participated in 2019 Girls Go CyberStart
  • The Hawaii State winner ranked 6th in the nation.
  • Prizes: 1st place = $100 per girl + $100 for the school; 2nd place = $75 per girl + $100 for the school; 3rd place = $50 per girl + $100 for the school
  • 10 Hawaii girls had individual game scores that qualified them for $500 scholarships
  • A total of $8,600 in cash prizes and scholarships were awarded to Hawaii players and their schools.