Our First Escape Room
In the fall of 2019, we were trying to figure out how we might help students and others learn more about cybersecurity. We wanted it to be something fun, but also educational. The idea of an escape room came up. Our interns jumped at the opportunity to create one. The setup was in the Reinert Library C.A.V.E. That allowed us to create an amazing environment with the curved wall and three projectors. Since it was near the end of October, the Halloween theme seemed to fit both the time of year and the topic. Groups went through the escape room solving a variety of challenges associated with cybersecurity. Most were able to escape.
The setup was such that most of the props used fit into a plastic box. That and the video background made it very easy to store. It served as a model for future escape rooms. The Canon team was the first group to take on the challenge.
This project was done in collaboration with the IT Communications Team.
The Phishing Zone
With the success of the October Cyber Security Escape Room, the Radlab created a version for the Technology Test Kitchen that took place in February, 2020. This shortened 15-minute escape room focused on phishing and was available to students, faculty, and staff.
The Twilight Zone themed escape room featured an invitation to a Billy Bluejay birthday party. Participants were asked to help in planning the party and had to accomplish a number of tasks to do so. With the help of a phishing poster, participants had to pass a quiz. From there, they were taken to a “fake” website where they made invitations to send out. Throughout this process, they compiled information that might put them at risk, found messages on balloons, determined the difference between real and phishing emails, and used augmented reality to open a video.
Virtual Cybersecurity Escape Room
Creating an escape room to educate students on cybersecurity risks in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic was a challenge. After discussion and research, it was decided that in collaboration with IT Communications, the Radlab would develop a virtual escape room.
Chad created a 3D animated, lip-synced avatar to serve as the guide. Dany Guerra, intern from IT Communications, helped with the script and recorded the avatar’s voice. Cat Palmer and Sarah Eulie, Radlab interns, took 360 degree photos of a Creighton dorm room. Having never used it before, Sarah learned how to effectively use Captivate and some of its new capabilities to put together the 360 degree environment with a series of challenges that participants must complete to escape the virtual world.
Those taking part in the activity worked in groups through Zoom to complete the adventure. Although originally targeted for students, the activity was also available to faculty and staff.
This type of activity not only works for a cyber security escape room, but serves as a model for possible course activities based on other topics.