City, University of London

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CitySpark is a business ideas competition open to all City students and recent alumni. CitySpark focusses on finding problems, identifying real gaps in the market and building evidence-based startups from day one. CitySpark places a core focus on encouraging students to ‘get out of the building’, meet target customers and develop a full understanding of the problem to be solved. This provides an excellent starting point for brilliant ideas to develop into fully-fledged business ventures. The competition is split into two challenges throughout the academic year to help students develop their entrepreneurial skills and launch businesses.

A special category, MakerSpark, was created to recognise the innovations created by engineering students, and this element is supported by a £3,000 EIB prize fund.
Winner of MakerSpark Award: Alien Security, Noor Alrayes, MSc Cyber Security - £3,000 Engineers in Business Prize as part of a larger prize

Alien Security is a cybersecurity consultancy that offers tailored packages for small companies and startups which finds security vulnerabilities that a malicious hacker could potentially exploit. Working with clients, Alien Security causes ‘serious chaos’ testing IT environments and physical cybersecurity to maximise cybersecurity defence.

Founder and CEO, Noor Alrayes, who is studying the MSc Cyber Security course said: “Cybersecurity is not only a technology problem but also a people problem, which is why we offer cybersecurity support to clients and tailor our services to their needs.”

In addition to winning the Engineers in Business MakerSpark award, Noor also qualified for the Inspiring Innovator of the Year Awards which she also won.