Bit Sentinel and Orange Romania announce the opening of registrations at the cybersecurity national program for high school and university students, UNbreakable Romania, the 2024 edition
Bit Sentinel, a company specializing in cybersecurity services, and Orange Romania, the local operator with the best-performing network, announce the opening of the registration period for the seventh edition of UNbreakable Romania, a program designed to support high school and university students in Romania to move towards a career in cybersecurity or to improve their knowledge in the field. In addition to gaining valuable skills, winners can win prizes worth over 8,000 euro.
Through this program, the organizers aim to help bridge the gap between the demand and supply of skilled cybersecurity workers. The global cybersecurity workforce gap is growing yearly, reaching 4 million professionals in 2023, according to the CyberSecurity Workforce study by (ISC)². Therefore, starting today, high school and university students interested in cybersecurity can register for the 2024 edition of UNbreakable Romania, where they will be able to test or develop their cyber skills alongside well-known experts in the field. For the first time, this year’s competition will have an onsite final round in Brasov.
After the start of registrations, a second round of online training and preparation – a bootcamp – will start on 20 February. Afterwards, the individual competition will take place on 22-24 March, followed by the team competition, on 5-7 April, all online.
In addition to previous years, UNbreakable Romania 2024 also launches a final round in the form of an onsite team competition. It will take place in Brasov, from 19 to 21 April. The top 15 teams from the final ranking of the online team competition will be selected for the final. Of these, at least 8 teams will be selected from the high school participants. The final ranking will be announced on 30 April and participants will receive individual performance reports highlighting their journey and achievements at UNbreakable. The winners will receive prizes worth more than 8,000 euro from Bit Sentinel and Orange Romania. Details of the full calendar of UNbreakable Romania 2024 activities, entry form and prizes are available on the official competition website.
UNbreakable continues to encourage participation and inclusive competition, so the top 3 winners and top 3 winners of the individual competition will automatically qualify for the finals of the Romanian Cyber Security Challenge – RoCSC 2024. RoCSC 2024 finalists will receive national recognition, which will be an added advantage in the job market. In addition, they will be able to be part of the national team that will represent Romania in the European Cyber Security Championship.
In parallel with the online competition stages of UNbreakable Romania that take place at a national level, there will also be an international edition – UNbreakable International. At the international competition, participation is encouraged among high school and university students from all over the world, but also among those who have already started their career and want to develop in the field of cybersecurity.
“Cybersecurity is extremely dynamic and we are pleased to see that the number of participants enrolled is increasing from one edition to the next, in line with the interest in working in this sector. In this sense, UNbreakable becomes the benchmark program for young enthusiasts, giving them the chance to accumulate and test their knowledge and to get in touch with well-known experts in the field. That’s why this year’s edition takes the competition to the next level: we have expanded the educational archive to more than 200 solved challenges, and the training period will focus mainly on hands-on live demos by experts in the field, but also by former participants eager to get involved in training young talents. Moreover, through UNbreakable International we are expanding the scope of the event to get the widest possible participation, which is essential to find the best solutions to potential attackers. Then – and perhaps the most important aspect – we will also have an onsite format of the competition, in Brasov, which will allow the best players to experience even better real attack conditions, to test their ability to respond to such situations, but especially their knowledge”, said Andrei Avadanei, CEO Bit Sentinel.
Orange Romania, which organizes UNbreakable Romania alongside Bit Sentinel, will promote the program in the ecosystem of partner universities where it has been active for over 27 years through the Orange Educational Program. This year as well, UNbreakable will take place on CyberEDU, the technical educational platform developed by Bit Sentinel and supported by Orange, where there are many educational resources for training cybersecurity professionals.
“As we face a shortage of cybersecurity professionals, it is essential to encourage young people who want to perform in this field and support the dedicated teachers who guide their steps. At Orange, for 27 years, through a variety of education programs, we have been supporting those who want a career in telecommunications and those who want to innovate and excel. UNbreakable Romania is clear proof that through collaboration between business and educational institutions, competition can turn into a broad training program, a launch pad for the professionals we so desperately need. We are glad to see that, year after year, UNbreakable attracts more and more talents and becomes a reference point in the competitions, as it happens with the CyberEDU platform, which today is the preparation basis for the most important national cybersecurity competitions”, said Cristian Pațachia-Sultănoiu, Development & Innovation Manager, Orange Romania.
More than 1,000 participants are expected at this year’s UNbreakable Romania edition
Previous editions have attracted a total of nearly 4,000 high school and university students from tens of universities and high schools across the country. For the 2024 edition, organizers expect more than 1,000 participants.
During the event, the participants will have access to theoretical resources and solve exercises inspired by real-life situations, aligned with industry standards and needs. In this way, the new generation of data security experts will be better prepared for the future and for the future demands of the job market. At the same time, the individual performance report they receive at the end of UNbreakable will provide participants with an in-depth analysis of their proven skills during the competitions, according to industry-relevant criteria, which will help them to position themselves better later on.
The seventh UNbreakable will be attended by cybersecurity experts, as mentors, as well as past participants, a sign of the event’s success and its role in shaping future leaders. Mentors will answer questions from participants during the training phase and will actively participate in the development of the theoretical and exercise program for the current season.
This year’s edition is all the more welcome as cybersecurity faces complex new challenges. In addition to a major shortage of skilled staff, 92% of companies surveyed say they also face a lack of skills needed to address cybersecurity issues due to a lack of training, according to the CyberSecurity Workforce survey by (ISC)².
About UNbreakable Romania
UNbreakable Romania is a national program organized for high school and university students in the country who are preparing for a career in cybersecurity or who want to improve their knowledge in the field. The pilot edition took place in 2020 and since then, UNbreakable has grown into an annual program, with around 4,000 young people in total from dozens of universities and hundreds of high schools in Romania participating. Detailed results of the most recent edition can be found here.
About Bit Sentinel
Bit Sentinel has been in the cybersecurity business since 2015 and provides comprehensive cybersecurity services such as penetration testing services, IT security audits, GDPR and NIS consulting services, cyber attack data recovery, incident response, and cyber attack investigations. As of 2020, Bit Sentinel also offers services in the area of Security Operation Center (SOC) through its BSS-CERT division, which includes continuous monitoring of companies’ activity, thus identifying and isolating cyber threats before they cause significant damage to IT systems. These services are tailored to the needs of each company and are supported by a team of certified experts. Bit Sentinel also offers training sessions in the fight against cyber attacks, developing special courses and programs for security enthusiasts who want to learn the basics.