A team of pupils from an Aberdeen school have won the Scottish semi-finals of a cyber competition.
The students, from St Margaret’s School for Girls, have secured a coveted place in the grand final of the CyberFirst Girls competition, which takes place next month, after competing against almost 600 schools across the UK.
The semi-finals took place on March 19 and were held online in Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales as well as five English regions. More than 120 teams simultaneously took on a series of cyber security puzzles covering cryptography, logic and networking.
Ellie Ong, Rachel Murray, Celine Muir and Iris Emembolu beat more than 6,500 pupils during the qualifying rounds, cementing them as the UK’s top aspiring codebreakers in their age group.
The successful girls were among hundreds aged 12 to 13 who put their cyber security know-how to the test in the semi-finals of the CyberFirst Girls Competition, a competition run by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) to inspire the next generation of young women to consider a career in cyber security.
Anna Tomlinson, head teacher of St Margaret’s said: “We’re so proud of Ellie, Rachel, Celine and Iris who were the highest scoring team in Scotland at the CyberFirst Girls Competition semi-finals.
“Competitions like this are very important as they inspire girls to pursue their interests in technology and consider careers in under-represented fields such as cyber security.”
Celine Muir, one of the pupils who reached the finals added: “The qualifying round of the CyberFirst competition was really exciting as we had to work through security puzzles, cryptography, logic and networking. We’re really pleased our hard work paid off and we can’t wait for the Grand Final.”
Chris Ensor, NCSC deputy director for Cyber Growth, said: “Congratulations to all those who reached the CyberFirst Girls semi-finals, and a special well done to those teams now going through to the Grand Final.”