Chemist Wins UK Cyber Security Challenge

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Stephen Miller, 28, who works as a lab team manager at a pharmaceutical company, recently won the UK's Cyber Security Challenge and was named the new UK Cyber Security Champion. The runner up was Steve Jarvis, 24, who works on the IT team at a hedge fund.

The competition's Masterclass final, which was developed by HP and Cassidian CyberSecurity, challenged 40 finalists to defend a fictitious communications supplier to a Formula 1 racing team by looking for signs of malicious attacks and determining the best ways to defeat them.

"To have won the Cyber Security Challenge UK is amazing," Miller said after winning the award. "It’s a result that gives me huge confidence to start applying this expertise to protect information and data in my own workplace. It’s also a powerful message to anyone who might question whether the Challenge is for them. I came to this competition in 2010 with no background in cyber security and yet my own interest in the area, coupled with the experience I have built up playing the Challenge competitions, has resulted in me winning the whole thing."

"Stephen’s success in the Challenge, as a chemist with no formal training in this profession, is a powerful demonstration of the hidden talent that exists in people from across all types of professional backgrounds. ... The Challenge exists not only to identify skilled people for the traditional security industry, but also serves to highlight to organisations the security skills within their own teams," Cyber Security Challenge UK CEO Stephanie Daman said in a statement.