Posted on September 23, 2019

Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) will host its first Qatar International Cybersecurity Contest (QICC), in partnership with the competition’s Official Airline Sponsor Qatar Airways, at Minaretein Building, Education City from October 1 to 3, 2019. The event aims to increase awareness among participants of complex cybersecurity threats and valuable results to protect critical information and networks.

Academics, experts, and students from Qatar and around the world will take part in a contest organized by five of HBKU’s colleges. Activities include a series of interactive sessions designed specifically to tackle existing cyber vulnerabilities and pave the way for future innovation. Expert discussions and workshops will also consider emerging threats, as well as efforts to foster sustainable technological development in the area of cybersecurity. All HBKU contributions to the QICC are designed to highlight synergies between cybersecurity issues and key research interests. It is expected that more than 130 participants, both local and international, will take part in the competition.

Organized by HBKU, the Qatar International Hacking Contest invites participants to engage in advanced and multidisciplinary research activities. For instance, the College of Islamic Studies will stage the Empower Cyber-Akhlaq Competition, which looks at cyberspace through the lens of ethics and morality. For its part, the College of Humanities and Social Sciences will deliver the first international Fake News Detection Contest, a constantly evolving threat that requires suitably adaptable solutions. At the same time, the College of Science and Engineering will provide a contest on ethical hacking activities. The College of Law’s Cybersecurity Moot Competition sees participants from law schools around the world presenting an oral argument in a simulated international court proceeding. Teams will also go head-to-head in the College of Health and Life Sciences’ Genomics Cybersecurity Contest, which raises awareness about the importance of securing genetic data.

Speaking ahead of the event, Dr. Roberto Di Pietro, QICC committee chair, said: “There are three very important reasons why HBKU is excited to be hosting the QICC. First, cybersecurity is a global issue with Qatar being an international leader in efforts to establish policies that promote best practice and cooperation and to foster research and technology innovation in Cybersecurity. Second, the contest is aligned with the Qatar National Cybersecurity Strategy, which is part of Qatar National Cybersecurity Strategy. As a result, the QICC is the ideal platform for raising awareness among Qatari society of the importance of establishing and maintaining a secure cyberspace. Finally, our academic and industry partners for this contest underscore HBKU’s growing global presence and reputation. We’re also confident that the QICC will serve as a model for similar events beyond Qatar.”

Qatar Airways Senior Vice President Marketing and Corporate Communications, Ms. Salam Al Shawa, said: “Qatar Airways is proud to support HBKU’s initiative of the ‘Qatar International Cybersecurity Contest’, where the participants involved will help develop preventive measures and realistic solutions that will shape the future of cybersecurity here in Qatar. This contest highlights the Qatar National Cybersecurity Strategy of the Qatar National Vision 2030 and is on the right track to preserve the significant values of this nation.”

The event will be held in English. For more information, or to register to attend the open talks and workshops, please visit https://www.hbku.edu.qa/en/qicc

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