Santa's Business Card:
SANS 2016 Holiday Hack Challenge
Winning Entries and Official Answers

The courtroom was jam-packed! The unusual nature of the legal proceedings attracted a most extraordinary audience. Legendary holiday figures intermixed with a variety of Time Lord associates, all focused intensely on the action in front of the room. Jack Frost, Mother Nature, and Father Time sat near Sarah Jane Smith and Romana. A pair of Daleks flanked either side of Krampus, immediately behind the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, and a sullen-looking Rudolph. The question before the court: Is Dr. Who guilty of assault and battery, Santa abduction, and conspiracy to subvert the primary timeline, and, if so, what will his punishment be?

The Courtroom

The evidence was stacked pretty heavily in favor of the prosecution. His grand plan to suppress the 1978 release of the Star Wars Holiday Special in tatters, Dr. Who sat in the defendant's box with a stoic look on his face.

The chief prosecuting attorney announced, "I'd like to admit the following exhibits under the category Honorable Mention in the Matter of The People versus Dr. Who, also known as The Case of SANS Holiday Hack Challenge 2016: Santa's Business Card. Each of these reports provides excellent insight into the case before the court."

Honorable Mention:
Paul Beckett
Kevin Breen
William David
Nuttakorn Dhiraprayudti
David Forsythe
Igor Guarisma
Mark Mulvaney
Dan Roberts
Charlie Snyder
Josh Tomkiel
Gavin Walker
D. Weir
Dan Whalen
Chris Williams
Clayton Van Tol

The judge responded matter-of-factly. "Thank you, counselor. Any more?"

"Yes, your honor. I hereby submit the documents created by these investigators under the category of Super Honorable Mention. Each of them does a fantastic job of describing the details of the misguided plot and its associated investigation, clearly demonstrating the defendant's guilt."

Super Honorable Mention:
Keldrin B
Michael Cecil
Cory Duplantis
Nick Ippolito
Radosław Karpowicz
Christopher Maddelena
Alexander T. Merck
Delaney Ng
Derek R00k
Harinderjeet Singh
Paul Southerington
Alexandros Vavakos
Jeff White
Kevin White

"And, your honor, we ask the court to acknowledge the following seven investigators of the case who were selected at random from all such investigators to receive a token of the court's esteem, a much coveted, soft-and-cuddly, NetWars T-Shirt."

Random Draw Winners (receiving a NetWars T-Shirt):
Stephanie Daly
Justin Dailey (no relation, we think, to Stephanie)
Ariel Montano
William Clay Moody
Aviad Noach
Matthew Reams
Calle Svensson

The judge, wearing a NetWars T-shirt under his judicial robes, smiled at the reference and said, "Is that all, counselor?"

The prosecuting attorney was just warming up. "I'd like the court to specially acknowledge each of the following super creative entries from our team of investigators by sending them one of those fantastic NetWars T-shirts."

Super Creative Entries (receiving a NetWars T-Shirt):
Nathan Coppersmith: An amazing answer with rhyme all the time.
Hecber Cordova: A wonderfully creative story of Jessica and Joshua Dosis solving the challenge.
Alexandre D'Hondt: A detailed and mind-blowing alternative ending where Alexandre hacked the Holiday Hack Quest code in his browser to kill Dr. Who locally in-game.
Chris Elgee: A Billy Joel inspired Christmas time jingle that is truly a work of art, bringing smiles to the entire team.
Seth Fogie: A Seussian extravaganza... a solution all in rhyme, along with a YouTube performance of his answers in simulated Grinch voice.
Robert Guiler: A Star-Trek-Themed trial, complete with Jean Luc Picard, William Riker, and even Picard's own prosecutor, Captain Phillipa Louvois (look it up!): What a GREAT read.
Rachel and Jacob Nappi: The sweetest investigative report we received this year, with cute family photo AND an amazing 80-minute video walkthrough of the entire challenge!

The judge then spoke up, "Counselor, I also understand that there were three specific investigators whose reporting deserves extra special recognition. In particular, the court recognizes the following report as the....

Best Creative Answer (receiving a 4-month subscription to NetWars Continuous):
Markus Dauberschmidt: This incredible tale of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson investigating the mysterious disappearance of Santa Claus both entertained and informed the court deeply."

The judge continued, "And this report's excellent detail and description of the criminal activities deserve the merit of....

Best Technical Answer (receiving a 4-month subscription to NetWars Continuous):
Vlad Grigorescu."

The wise judge then announced, "And the recipient of our court's Highest Honor for an investigator, our....

Grand Prize Winner (and the Official SANS 2016 Holiday Hack Challenge Answer, and recipient of a free SANS Online course) is:
Janusz Jasinski (along with a web supplement)."

The judge then turned to the prosecutor and said, "Is that all your evidence, counselor?"

The attorney responded, "Yes, but I have one more witness to call before the court, your honor."

"Proceed," indicated the judge.

"I hereby call Santa W. Claus, also known as 'Kris Kringle', and, in some circles also known as 'Jeff,' to the stand."

The jolly red-suited legend approached the stand and was duly sworn in. The attorney asked a simple question, "What is your relationship with the defendant, Mr. Claus?"

All eyes upon him, Santa cleared his throat and began a most remarkable statement.

"I have known the Doctor for quite some time and have shared many a happy moment with him. Reading the evidence submitted above, I readily understand the seriousness of the charges. However, I'd like to point out that the good Doctor has on countless occasions saved all of humanity and this fragile world we inhabit from utter destruction from both mortal and immortal adversaries across both time and space. His positive contributions to the world are incalculable, and must be taken into account."

The judge and each member of the jury nodded.

Santa continued, "Furthermore, his intentions in this matter were associated with trying to make our world a still better place. Who among us could possibly dispute that the Star Wars Holiday Special is a blot on all of humanity, a toxic stain in the timeline. I know that the Doctor's methods were problematic, but his goal was indisputably noble, even though the ends don't justify the means.

What's more, Dr. Who has deeply apologized for his actions not only to me, but also to everyone who was impacted by them. I know a thing or two about measuring whether someone is naughty or nice and have been doing so since time immemorial. I absolutely know that the Doctor's deep contrition here is genuine, and I'm putting him on the Nice list for next year."

Hushed murmurs permeated the court. Despite all of the evidence assembled against Dr. Who, the persuasive power of his place on Santa's very own, one-and-only, Official Naughty and Nice List represented a major turning point in the case.

Santa then concluded, "And finally, to answer your question about my relationship with the defendant - our relationship is excellent. I personally beseech the court to dismiss the charges against the good Doctor. I was the target of his actions, but I wholly forgive him and believe that the extenuating circumstances regarding the case indicate the need to let him continue in his capacity protecting all of humanity. It is the best result for all of us."

Not a dry eye remained in the entire courtroom. After a short recess and consultation with the jury, the judge announced the decision....

"Case dismissed."

A round of applause erupted in the courtroom! As the closing credits began to scroll, Santa walked down from the witness stand and approached Dr. Who. The two men smiled and shared a hug as Santa forgave his friend.