Congratulations to Alexa, Angelina, Hattie and Laura who have been crowned NATIONAL WINNERS at the GCHQ National Cyber Security Centre's CyberFirst Competition, beating 3,388 other teams from 840 other schools.
"The UK's most cyber savvy girls"
In this year's CyberFirst 2019 competition final, 10 teams (from over 3,000 that had entered) pitted their cyber wits against each other at The Playfair Library, University of Edinburgh.
And after a day of problem-solving and code-cracking challenges, it was the our girls Hattie, Laura, Alexa and Angelina who eventually triumphed, proving themselves the UK's most cyber-savvy girls from almost 12,000 entrants. As well as the prestigious CyberFirst 2019 trophy, they took home a new laptop each and £1,000 worth of computer equipment for their school.
Speaking shortly after they'd won, the girls said “At first when they called our name we thought it must be a prank! We are so shocked to have won.
We have really enjoyed the whole experience – it's a super competition that gives a detailed insight into vital cyber security skills.”
Of course, the CyberFirst finals are always great fun, but there's a serious reason why the NCSC kick-started the competition 3 years ago. The UK faces a massive shortage of cyber security skills, which means we need to draw on the widest pool of talent out there. This means encouraging more young women to consider a career in cyber security.
The Top 10 finalists (who all enjoyed an exclusive dinner at Edinburgh Castle on the eve of the competition) were:
- Watford Grammar School for Girls, Hertfordshire
- Beverley High School, East Riding, Yorkshire
- Oxford High School GDST
- Denmark Road High School, Gloucester
- Chelmsford County High School for Girls, Essex
- The Tiffin Girls’ School, London
- St Catherine’s College, Armagh
- Withington Girls’ School, Manchester
- Queen’s School, Chester
- The Royal Masonic School for Girls, Hertfordshire
All ten of the final teams who reached for the finals will be travelling to Windsor Castle later this year, where they will have tea with HRH the Duke of York, who continues to show his support for the competition. That promises to be another amazing day out for our girls, and all the other finalists.
Well done to all the teams – but especially our girls!