SCHOOLGIRLS in Wales interested in an career in the traditionally male-dominated field of cyber security are being called on to enter a competition run by the UK's intelligence service.

Girls in year eight are eligible to entre the CyberFirst Girls 2020 competition, which is being run by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) - part of GCHQ - to encoruage more young women to get into cyber security.

Teams from across Wales, England, Scotland and Northern Ireland will be tested with a series of puzzles and challenges to help them develop their skills in cyber security and ultimately secure a place in the grand final.


And for the first time ever the national final will be held in Wales, with a new regional semi-final round being introduced to ensure representation from all parts of the UK.

The Welsh Government's finance minister Rebecca Evans said she would like to see as many girls enter the competition as possible to show off the wealth of young talent Wales has to offer.

“This competition is a fantastic opportunity to both educate and nurture young talent in a fun environment, and help develop a diverse workforce that contributes towards protecting our nation’s future cyber security," she said.

“I want to encourage girls across Wales to take part in this exciting challenge, have fun and learn something new about cyber security.

“Good luck to everyone taking part.”

Chris Ensor, deputy director of growth with the NCSC, said: “We’re thrilled to introduce regional semi-finals for this year’s competition to ensure some of the most talented minds from across the country showcase their skills in the final.

“Young people play an increasingly vital role in cyber security, and it’s never been more important to identify and diversify the future workforce to continue keeping the UK safe.

“This is the first time the CyberFirst Girls Competition final will be held in Wales and it will no doubt inspire the next generation of cyber security experts here.”

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