At AFNOM we’ve had a really exciting term, possibly one of our greatest yet! Not only have we seen more attendees than ever at our weekly meetups, but we’ve been able to continue to take part in loads of different competitions across the UK.

We’ve had an enormous amount of interest from new first year and masters students this year who are really interested in exploring the world of ethical hacking. We started the term with our regular Linux Installfest, helping everyone get setup with the tools we use on a regular basis. We got a fantastic turnout, several times more attendees than when we ran it last year!

welcome stall

The very next week we jumped right into the hacking, introducing everyone to their new Linux systems by running a session on privilege escalation and leading straight into sessions on web, networking, steganography and reverse engineering. Each session has been led by a different member of the society, on a topic hey are passionate about and keen to share their knowledge.

From this term we’ve taken a more planned approach to our meetings, running two tracks; one for beginners and one for more advanced hackers. This has gone down really really well and we’ve increased our number of regular members and gotten lots of positive feedback about this change. We’ve also started our sessions with practical demonstrations and a pre-prepared challenge to help illustrate how challenges can be solved.

We’ve continued to be nationally competitive by taking part in a number of UK-based and online Capture the Flag competitions, including a trip to take part in the BCS CyberCrime Cup finals. We’ve also been a part of bringing awesome national events to the University such as TryHackMe’s HackBack2 competition which we hosted and competed against 26 other universities across the UK.


Coming up next term: we’re really looking forward to exploring deeper and more complex topics, taking part in more Capture the Flag competitions (there’s a few really great ones soon!), and enjoying many more friendly socials at the pub. We’re also super excited for our second WhatTheCTF event which is now in the planning stages!

We’ve had a really great first term and we’re very excited to see what the rest of the year has in store – see you there!

Justin Chadwell