SJW Students Find Key to Smart Cities at “Unlock Blockchain 2018” Conference

9 months

A group Level-8, IT Security students from the HCT-Sharjah Women’s campus (SJW) attended the Unlock Blockchain 2018 Conference in Dubai on January 14-15, 2018 where they learned about current Blockchain challenges and developments.

The conference broached subjects on Blockchain technology, which is the essential ingredient for Smart Cities of the Future, and delegates discussed how Blockchain can enhance smart cities and work with IoT to develop not only more efficient cities, but a smarter economy using data analytics and peer-to-peer network. The forum was a city-wide initiative to transform Dubai into the world’s smartest and happiest city where Dubai considered as one of the first cities that implemented this technology in their smart government in the world.

The opening speech was delivered by Dr. Aisha Bint Buti Bin Bisher, Director General of Smart Dubai, the office driving Dubai’s city-wide transformation. The students eagerly absorbed the issues raised at the conference, which also addressed the blockchain challenges facing a hyper-connected world. They attended several keynote addresses from International expert speakers, who presented several emerging security innovations and technologies.

Under the supervision of CIS faculty member, Nedaa Al Barghuthi, the students heard that the need to address the need of blockchain in government and challenges has become extremely important as society moves towards an economy powered by connectivity, big data and the Internet of Things. The students attended several presentation sessions, discussion panels and workshops which were delivered by blockchain security expertise from the local industry and internationally, such as US, Canada, UK, Japan, Russia, China and from Europe.

The event raised the spectre of governments, large enterprises and even start-ups can no longer invest in obsolete methods of detection and defense and need to understand how cyber security impacts their strategy and long-term sustainability.

CIS faculty Nedaa Al Barghuthi said: “The conference was an excellent opportunity for CIS students as it brought together industries, government and global experts to talk about this trending topic. It also enriched their knowledge about blockchain technology.”

CIS Student Fatima Yousif said: “The conference was an excellent event as it helped to increase her knowledge of real-world security issues, particularly the blockchain challenges as they plan to develop Smart Cities. We thank Ms. Nedaa for giving this opportunity to us to increase our knowledge in most of the digital security fields.”

CIS Student Noura Zarooni added: “Our trip to the unlock Blockchain forum which was one of the biggest Blockchain forums to take place in the region. The workshop that I liked a lot is about Electrical Vehicles charging registration, payments & settlements over Blockchain, which delivered by a security specialist from DEWA. The objective of this workshop was to discuss the use case with attendees to exchange ideas on the best way to utilize blockchain technology. I have benefited from this workshop because they shared with us about their planning for future about using Electrical Vehicles with blockchain and how Electrical Vehicles will be charged in future. Also, we attended another workshop about Securing the Blockchain, where we learned about problems and solutions about Securing Blockchain.”

Student Alya added:“It was a good experiment to attend such as this conference. I really realize how much important Blockchain and how the organizations from all world they attended this conference. As Dr. Aisha Bint Buti Bin Bisher, Director General of Smart Dubai said: ‘Guided by the example of our nation’s leadership, we have learned to continually look to the horizon to start creating the future today. And while others were still debating the prospects of this new technology, we got to work. We are making Dubai the blockchain capital of the world, we have 20 public sector Blockchain use cases and it’s only the beginning’,”.

Finally, CIS student Maitha added: “I was very excited with all the presentations and discussion panels to learn about this new technology and to expand our horizons by gaining new information, as well as taking ideas that can helpful in all capstone projects. We thank Ms. Nedaa and the CIS department for offering this opportunity to attend this great event.”

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