OREANDA-NEWS. November 12, 2015. Global technology leader Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT), with support from key Emirati institutions including Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC), and Tawazun, has crowned the United Arab Emirates University’s team as the winner of its inaugural UAE Cyber Security Challenge which was held at the Centre for Innovation & Security Solutions, Masdar Institute campus.

Underlining the importance of cybersecurity in protecting key critical national infrastructure across the UAE, the Cyber Security Challenge put 20 undergraduate students from Khalifa University, United Arab Emirates University, Abu Dhabi Polytechnic and Zayed University through a series of challenges that simulated an attack on an Oil & Gas operator. This hands-on experience will be similar to the future roles students are expected to fill after university and is wholly aligned to the UAE’s cyber strategy.   

Speaking about the initiative, Dr. Mohamed Yousif Baniyas, Executive Director, Higher Education Sector at ADEC said: “Working together with an industry leader like Lockheed Martin on this important challenge plays an important role in ADEC’s overall strategic commitment to train students on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics related activities, as well as contributes significantly in supporting research and innovation across higher education institutions.”

Dr. Baniyas further added: “The selected students took part in the UAE’s first cyber based challenge, which aligns with ADEC’s focus on experiential learning in science and technology. Our future generation is being exposed to different learning opportunities with emphasis on invention, innovation and creativity, which is both helpful for their personal career paths as well as for the nation as a whole.”

Dr Steve Griffiths, Vice-President for Research, Masdar Institute, said, “Masdar Institute’s participation in establishing the first-ever UAE Cyber Security Challenge illustrates the strength of our support for this topic of vital importance to the UAE power and water sector. It also reflects our commitment to developing the next generation of science and engineering manpower. We are delighted to partner with Lockheed Martin, the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC) and Tawazun in this initiative to demonstrate the capability of locally available talent for leading-edge information and communication technology domain. We believe the competition brought out the very best among the students.”