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Masters students to help build trust in the online world

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Wednesday, 29 May 2013 18:06 Written by DFM News

15 UK universities will this morning call on their masters students to find new ways to improve trust in the online world. In return they will receive an opportunity to present their ideas to employers looking to recruit talented individuals to not only secure their systems but also improve customer’s confidence in their products and services. Any MA, MBA or MSc student can enter a presentation based on their dissertation for assessment by a panel of policy makers and business leaders as well as security professionals. The competition recognises that improving confidence in our increasingly internet-dependent society requires us to reach out beyond the technical, computer science and electrical engineering domains.

The competition has been developed by the WCIT (The Worshipful Company of Information Technologists), the City of London Livery Company for ICT, in association with The Institute of Engineering and Technology, the Digital Policy Alliance and others. It will be delivered through the Cyber Security Challenge which runs a series of competitions developed by employers and supporters from industry, government and academia to find new talent for the sector and is part of a new stream of university activities. The ‘Meaning of Trust Competition’ is open to any master’s student from any of the following 15 universities that have signed up to provide first stage judging panels for their own entries.

  • Bedfordshire
  • City University London
  • Cranfield
  • De Monfort
  • Greenwich
  • Kent
  • London Metropolitan Strathclyde
  • London School of Economics
  • Northumbria
  • Nottingham Trent
  • Royal Holloway, University of London
  • St Andrews
  • Queen Mary, University of London
  • University College London

  • Initial entries must come in the form of a dissertation synopsis which addresses at least some of the key issues set by the competition organisers. These include measures to increase confidence in security products and services, as well as in those who develop, support and use them, and making the case for or against business, political or regulatory action to address security concerns.

    Each participating University will select two or three entries for judging by a panel of industry experts who will decide the overall winners, to be announced at one or more awards ceremonies in Central London. At least one of these is expected to include an opportunity to present a winning entry to a conference hosted by the Lord Mayor with an audience drawn from the Livery Companies and City Institutions. Other awards events will have similar high profile audiences.

    Philip Virgo, chair of the WCIT Security Panel said: “Society is critically dependant on the security and resilience of complex computer systems, from the generation, processing and distribution of power, food and water to health and welfare. Meanwhile over a million jobs depend on confidence in UK-based on-line and IT-dependant financial services. Trust and confidence are being eroded at all levels, from personal experience of system failures, phishing and impersonation, not just press stories. Rebuilding confidence requires action along many dimensions: from enhancing the standards and competence of organisations and individuals to the use of trustworthy processes, products and services for handling identity, authentication and certainty of delivery.

    Registrations close Wednesday 31st July.

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