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DARPA Shredder Challenge Solved in 33 Days

Photo: cut2shreds.com

DARPA recently announced that its shredder challenge, issued about a month ago and tasking participants to piece back together five shredded documents, was solved in 33 days.

The winning team was a San Francisco-based group who used custom-coded algorithms to aid through suggesting fragment pairings to human assemblers for verification.

“Lots of experts were skeptical that a solution could be produced at all let alone within the short time frame,” said Dan Kaufman, director, of the DARPA Information Innovation Office.

The winning team, which was one out of nearly 9,000 registered teams, spent 600 man-hours to develop the correct algorithm and piece the documents back together. They won a $50,000 prize for their efforts.

“The most effective approaches were not purely computational or crowd-sourced, but used a combination blended with some clever detective work,” said Kaufman.

According to DARPA, this competition acted as a preliminary investigation into areas of information security to identify and assess potential capabilities to be used by war fighters. Using methods like the winning team did sheds light on security vulnerabilities of shredded national security documents, said DARPA.

Previous shredder challenge coverage:

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