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OWASP Hacking Lab

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OWASP Hacking Lab

OWASP Hacking Lab is providing free remote security (web) challenges and riddles (OWASP TOP 10, OWASP WebGoat, OWASP Hackademics). It differs from other damn vulnerable applications and sites with it's unique teacher application. Every challenge is asking for the vulnerability, exploit and mitigation. Send in your solution and other OWASP volunteers will grade your submission. A system where you can interact with human beings.

About Hacking-Lab

Hacking-Lab is an online ethical hacking, computer network and security challenge platform, dedicated to finding and educating cyber security talents. Furthermore, Hacking-Lab is providing the CTF and mission style challenges for the OWASP University Challenges and for the European Cyber Security Challenge. The Hacking-Lab also provides free OWASP TOP 10 online security labs. Hacking-Labs’ goal is to raise awareness towards increased education and ethics in information security through a series of cyber competitions that encompass forensics, cryptography, reverse-engineering, ethical hacking and defense.

Learn more about Hacking-Lab


Currently, there is one challenge, the OWASP TopTen with currently 8700 registered users and +3500 solutions send in and verified by the OWASP teachers! The goal is to provide an open and transparent process about the challenges, the teachers and continuously working on extending the available challenges.

Available challenges


OWASP Hacking Lab is free to use. It is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 license], so you can copy, distribute and transmit the work, and you can adapt it, and use it commercially, but all provided that you attribute the work and if you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under the same or similar license to this one.

What is Hacking Lab

OWASP Hacking Lab provides:


Download PDF HL CTF 2016.pdf

Download Power Point HL CTF 2016.pptx

Project Leaders

Ivan Buetler

Mateo Martinez

Related Projects


Quick Download

Download ZIP Challenge Concept Template

News and Events

In Print

This project can be purchased as a print on demand book from


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Project Type Files DOC.jpg

Solution Grading & Evaluation Guidelines for Teachers

  • Always be polite
    • Never ever be unpolite. No matter what comment or question you receive!
    • You are OWASP's interface, behave mature and polite.
  • Comment in positive phrasing
    • E.g. if partially scored has been achieved, congratulate them
    • If the solution contains a good write-up, let them know you appreciate!
    • If they thank you for the event, return the favor e.g. thanks for contributing
  • Teaching and mentoring
    • If a previous suggestion is not understand, try to rephrase
  • No abusive language is permitted
    • If you receive any in a solution, don't 'hit back'
    • See what is causing the frustration, see if you can help is, let Ivan or Martin know


  • Understanding the vulnerability is essential
    • If a solution describes the vulnerability, this does scores points.
  • Mitigation scores higher than hacking:
    • We are training security awareness! If mitigation is asked as part of the solution, this scores higher then exploitation
  • Exploiting is essential
    • The exploit has to be proven, but a solution that describes the exploit detailed, this is fine too!
  • Give points when possible
    • If not the complete answer has been supplied, give partial points when possible.
    • Only reject if:
      • there is no solution (e.g. a question asked by the student)
      • the solution is answering the wrong challenge
      • the vulnerability / exploit / mitigation has clearly not been understood
  • Rating example:
    • If you have 10 points to give this is how to divide them:
      • 3 Points for vulnerability description
      • 3 Points for proven exploit
      • 4 Points for complete mitigation description


OWASP Hacking-Lab is developed by a worldwide team of volunteers. The primary contributors to date have been:

  • Ivan Buetler
  • Martin Knobloch
  • Mateo Martinez

Volunteer Roles

  • Challenge developer
  • Challenge tester
  • LiveCD developer
  • Teachers (solution grading)
  • University Challenge Organizer

Involvement in the development and promotion of Hack Lab is actively encouraged! You do not have to be a security expert in order to contribute.

Become an OWASP challenge participant/student

  • Register to a free OWASP Hands-On Training (see tab "Available Challenges")
  • Sign-Up a Hacking-Lab account
  • Prepare your client infrastructure (recommended LiveCD from
  • Setup VPN from within your LiveCD
  • Read the challenge description (once registered in the first step)
  • Submit your solution into the HL portal
  • OWASP volunteers will grade your submission

Become an OWASP teacher

  • Solve the challenges as participant/student first
  • Make yourself familiar with the OWASP TOP 10, Hackademics and WebGoat challenges
  • Ask for becoming a teacher to the project leaders

Become an OWASP challenge developer

  • Solve the challenges as participant/student first
  • Submit your challenge ideas (using the challenge concept template)
  • Create your challenge

Become an OWASP challenge tester

  • Solve the challenges as participant/student first
  • Submit your feedback and ideas how to improve the challenges


The OWASP Hacking-Lab project is the framework used for the OWASP AppSec University Challenges.

This is an on-site university team versus university team competition run during the training days of an AppSec conference. See more here: OWASP University Challenge

Attack-Defense System


The challenges are even more dynamic and realistic now. Instead of just solving different security challenges, teams carry out a virtual online battle against each other in an attack-defense based competition, also known as CTF system. If you are interested to learn more about the CTF system, you will find here more information: CTF System

Previous events:


Please review University Challenge FAQ

European Cyber Security Challenge 2016


European Cyber Security Challenge
Today, most countries lack sufficient IT security professionals to protect their IT infrastructure. To help mitigate this problem, many of them set up national cyber security competitions for finding young cyber talents and for encouraging them to pursue a career in cyber security.

The European Cyber Security Challenge (ECSC) leverages these competitions in that it adds a pan-European layer to them: The top cyber talents from each country meet to network and collaborate and finally compete against each other to determine which country has the best cyber talents. To find out which country's team is the best, contestants have to solve security related tasks from domains such as web security, mobile security, crypto puzzles, reverse engineering and forensics and collect points for solving them.

How to join the ECSC 2016

What does this OWASP project offer you?
What releases are available for this project?
what is this project?
Name: OWASP Hacking Lab (home page)
Purpose: This project is about hands-on security challenges (joint venture project with Hacking-Lab)
License: Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 License
who is working on this project?
Project Leader(s):
  • Ivan Buetler @
  • Mateo Martinez @
how can you learn more?
Project Pamphlet: Not Yet Created
Project Presentation:
Mailing list: Mailing List Archives
Project Roadmap: View
Key Contacts
  • Contact Ivan Buetler @ to contribute to this project
  • Contact Ivan Buetler @ to review or sponsor this project
current release
Not Yet Published
last reviewed release
Not Yet Reviewed

other releases