The 2023 Codebreaker Challenge consists of a series of tasks that are worth a varying number of points based upon their difficulty. Schools will be ranked according to the total number of points accumulated by their students.

Solutions may be submitted at any time for the duration of the Challenge.

This year the initial tasks are strictly sequential, and one must be solved before the next one becomes available.

Each task in this year's challenge will require a range of skills. We need you to call upon all of your technical expertise, your intuition, and your common sense.

Good luck. We hope you enjoy the challenge!


NSA has two main jobs - collecting foreign signals intelligence and providing cybersecurity for the US government. As part of the latter mission, NSA works with partner agencies to provide technical assistance where our skills can be useful.

In this scenario, the US Coast Guard discovers an unidentified signal near US waters. You play the role of an NSA employee providing technical assistance to the USCG to identify and investigate the unknown object producing the signal.


The following challenge content is a PURELY FICTIONAL SCENARIO created by the NSA for EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES only. The mention and use of any actual products, tools, and techniques are similarly contrived for the sake of the challenge alone, and do not represent the intent of any company, product owner, or standards body.

Any similarities to real persons, entities, or events is coincidental.