Team HealthWaka comprising the trio of Omolola Oluwadara, Product development Manager; Kehinde Abolaji, Technical Lead and Ozemhoya Anthonia, Biologist has emerged as the overall winner of the Securehack 1.0. competition, which was organized by Eko Innovation Centre at the weekend.

HealthWaka was declared the winner ahead of Team Cyber Verse comprising Osonuga Steven and Akorede Rasaq that clinched the second-place position to win the sum of N650,000 and Team Nexa comprising Peter Adesina, Idris Tijani, Robinson Uche and Muhammed Musa that came third in the competition to cart home the sum of N350,000.

Apart from getting a 1 million prize, Team HealthWaka also got an acceleration programme investment of up to $50, 000 equity Investment to get their products ready for the market among other benefits.

The SecureHack 1.0 competition was launched in February and garnered over 400 registrations from participants to form 100+ teams from 62 locations in four countries and across two continents.

The grand finale of the hackathon, which took place at the Eko Innovation Centre in Ikoyi-Lagos had in attendance innovators, entrepreneurs, policymakers, security professionals and many others across the world who joined the event virtually.

In his welcome address, Victor Afolabi, Founder of Eko Innovation Centre and Curator of SecureHack 1.0, emphasized the importance of cybersecurity and the need for indigenous innovation in addressing security threats, especially in Nigeria.

He highlighted the five most efficient cyber defenders: Anticipation, Education, Detection, Reaction, and Resilience. “Security threat is much more than an IT topic and we are doing our bit the Eko Innovation Centre to drive the growth of this ecosystem,” he said.

Also in his keynote address, Oluwasolape Akinde, Head, IT GRC & DPO, Seven-Up Bottling Company Limited on the topic, “Strengthening Cyber Security in Africa’s Emerging Digital Economies”, noted that the challenges facing cyber security in Africa’s emerging digital economy is the lack of Collaboration and partnerships, which he argued is the best practices for strengthening cyberSecurity across the world.

“Collaboration and partnerships allow for the sharing of information and expertise, pooling of resources, and coordination of efforts to address common cybersecurity challenges,” he said.

According to him, overall emerging technologies such as blockchain and Al have the potential to significantly improve cybersecurity in African countries, stressing that by leveraging these technologies, organizations and governments can improve data security, detect and respond to threats in real time, and prevent fraud and money laundering.

He stated that it is also important to be aware of the potential risks and challenges associated with these technologies and to implement them responsibly and ethically.

The pitching of ideas by finalists of the hackathon had emerged from a process that saw teams split into groups of four and was required to work together for three weeks, brainstorming and ideating new concepts based on their focus areas, including cybersecurity, physical security and biosecurity.

During the entire process, 31 selection jurors selected the top 10 innovative solutions from 26 teams that pitched. The teams were subjected to coaching, and mentorship for two weeks. Speaking on the pitching process among other things, Ayodele Olojede who is the Chief Juror of the Hackathon and Group Head, of Emerging Businesses, Africa Bank Plc., said,

“The underlining factor we looked at among other criteria was “Civic good”. So, you are able to come up with a solution you can make money with and at the same time, you are solving a challenge that could benefit society. We looked at how great the contestants’ ideas were and also checked if there is a team that can progress this, we looked at the quality of the delivery, how they responded to questions and also looked at their business models,’’ she said.


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