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The £2,000 Ignition Awardees for April are…

Rahul Shah and Nipin Gopi, Alliance Manchester Business School

We’re delighted to announce that the winners of the April Ignition Award allocation are Rahul Shah and Nipin Gopi, both recent MBA graduates from AMBS.

Last month, we teamed up with the Masood Enterprise Centre (MEC) and worked with the University’s Blockchain Society, ‘Blockchainers’, to award up to £2,000 to an idea containing blockchain technology.

Rahul and Nipin presented a fascinating concept which uses blockchain to secure our online environment. Their focus is predominantly around the security of emails using identity management which could be of great importance to certain financial organisations.

With Cyberattacks becoming increasingly dangerous to organizations, it is no wonder that the Cyber Security market is worth billions.

“With a background in Computer Science, I’m aware of the risks that organisations face due to cyberattacks and with advancements in technology, the attacks will only get more sophisticated,” commented Rahul. He added, “we live in an age where we are dependent upon the internet, in particular emailing. Emails are not getting replaced in the near future and organisations are becoming increasingly vulnerable to technological threats such as cyberattacks, as they may be designed to access or destroy sensitive data or steal money. Using blockchain technology we have come up with a method to secure enterprise email networks by ensuring the emails can be verified and traced.

“Having had an interest in entrepreneurship since before we can remember, we’re excited to have an idea that we believe will swell in the market. It’s really encouraging to have the support from both MEC and the Innovation Optimiser to help move this forward.”

Nipin added, “our idea is still quite early stage, but we’re keen to get started on developing it. Winning this [Ignition Award] will now enable us to create a prototype to test our methods before approaching financial firms within Manchester. Our mission is to make our world more secure, one email at a time!”

Do you have a solution to a commercial, societal, or environmental problem? Then you could be the Ignition Award winner for May. Apply now to get your idea off the ground by emailing ignitionawards@umip.com

The Innovation Optimiser Ignition Award of up to £2,000 is available every month* until the end of July 2019 for staff and Early Career Researchers† (ECRs) at The University of Manchester with innovative ideas.

For more information, please visit the FAQs on our website.

The closing date for this month’s award is Sunday 26th May 2019.

*Subject to availability.

† UK Research Council definition of ECR: an individual who is within eight years of the award of their PhD or equivalent professional training, or an individual who is within six years of their first academic appointment. These durations exclude any period of career break, e.g. for family care or health reasons. The ‘first academic appointment’ is defined as the first paid contract of employment, either full-time or part-time, which lists research and/or teaching as the primary functions. The award of PhD is defined at the point of successful PhD viva.

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