New Cyber Security Challenge contests have been announced to replicate malware attacks, intellectual property theft and targeted threats.

Over 100 contestants will be tested in the four new face-to-face battles, prepared by professional cyber teams from Orange, Prodrive, (ISC)2, the SANS Institute, QinetiQ and Sophos.

The first to take place, on Saturday 24th November 2012, is the Orange and Prodrive Risk Analysis Face-to-Face that will see challenge candidates come up against a real life motorsport set-up, where candidates will work as security architects to deliver a practical security solution that protects the team's IP and confidential information from its rivals.

Taking place on Saturday 2nd December 2012 is the SANS Netwars, organised and run by the SANS Institute, which is an opportunity for candidates to demonstrate their skills on one of the world's most recognised cyber training platforms. During a gaming session lasting over two hours, participants will be tasked with recovering a number of targets from a virtual environment whilst their scores are displayed on a dynamic real-time scoreboard.

Taking place on Saturday 19th January 2013 is the Sophos Malware Hunt, where candidates will take on the role of forensics and defence specialists working for the UK government and will face both cyber criminal gangs and nation states as they run rampant in a virtual environment.

Finally, the QinetiQ and (ISC)2 Command and Control face-to-face competition will take place on Saturday 9th February 2013 and teams of cyber enthusiasts will be responsible for securing the IT systems protecting a simulated ‘top-secret facility'.

Stephanie Daman, CEO of the Cyber Security Challenge UK, said: “This year's face-to-face competitions have broadened the range of skills we are testing in a bid to more accurately represent those needed most by the range of employers who support us.

“As well as identifying talented people who can move straight into unfilled jobs, we also believe these four action filled days will open the eyes of over 100 talented amateurs who might never have considered how exciting a job in this sector could be.”