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Texas A&M at Qatar team wins second place in cybersecurity contest

Published Oct 07, 2019



Texas A&M University at Qatar graduate students Dabeeruddin Syed and Ameema Zainab won the second prize in Hamad Bin Khalifa University's QICC Genomics Cybersecurity contest.

The graduate students are working under the supervision of Texas A&M at Qatar faculty Dr. Haitham Abu-Rub, Dr. Shady S. Refaat, Dr. Othmane Bouhali and Dr. Ali Ghrayeb.

Over the course of three days, a total of 130 academics, experts and students took part in a contest organized by five of HBKU’s colleges. Among the participants were 45 Qatar-based and 85 international participants from more than 30 countries. All contributed to interactive sessions designed specifically to tackle existing cyber vulnerabilities and encourage future innovation.

Participants also benefited from expert discussions and workshops that considered emerging threats and sustainable technological development in the area of cybersecurity. In the contest, teams from different countries had the unique opportunity to gain hands-on experience in tackling some of the cybersecurity industry’s complex challenges.

Aptly named TAMU Cyber, the team worked on decrypting the genotype data using complex symmetrical key cryptography. The complex two-day contest necessitated the competitors to exhibit working knowledge of advanced cryptanalysis, different encryption standards, symmetric key cryptography, hash functions and cybersecurity vulnerabilities with respect to data genotyped using the Illumina Infinium Global Screening Array-24. 

More informaiton about the Qatar International Cybersecurity Contest can be found here