Obafemi Oluwatodunni Ademilogo, a 200-level student in the Department of Software Engineering, emerged victorious after a grueling competition that brought together 19 students from various tertiary institutions across African countries. This extraordinary achievement highlights the exceptional talent and innovation present within the walls of our institution. With this remarkable display of skill and expertise, Oluwatodunni has been crowned the Top Hacker of the Year among tertiary institutions in Africa at the prestigious GRIT Lab Africa, outshining competitors from across the African continent.
The GRIT Lab Africa, is a non-profit organization, in collaboration with the Research Group on Data, Artificial Intelligence, and Innovations for Digital Transformation at Johannesburg Business School (JSB) Innovation Lab, South Africa. GRIT Lab Africa is known for its FREE computer programming skills training (targeting all new technologies) and mentoring in mindset, discipline, and GRIT) program for young Africans. GRIT Lab Africa aims to create a safe space for training young Africans of diverse backgrounds, genders, races, religions, and ethnicities to be the best in computer programming, and building young people into a blend of great minds, disciplined and regimented personalities with good hearts for helping peers and solving societal problems using technology. Thomas Adewumi University is one of the tertiary institutions that have some students as mentees in GRIT Lab Africa.
The journey to becoming the Hacker of the Year demanded a combination of technical prowess, problem-solving ability, and the capacity to think outside the box. Exemplifying these qualities, Todunni spent 1, 685 minutes (28 hours, 5 minutes) online (the longest time stayed on by a remote hacker) as part of the software development team that provided technological solutions for the South African Council for Natural Scientific Professionals (SACNASP). This success serves as a testament to the exceptional education and support provided by TAU. The competition demanded nothing short of brilliance from the participants. Our Top Hacker navigated a series of challenging tasks and projects, displaying a comprehensive understanding of cutting-edge hacking techniques. His ability to swiftly identify vulnerabilities, devise innovative solutions, and protect critical systems set him apart from the competition.
With a background rooted in curiosity and a relentless drive for knowledge, Todunni developed a deep passion for hacking from a young age. Fuelled by the desire to make a positive impact and combat cyber threats, he channeled his energies into honing his skills under the mentorship of GRIT Lab Africa. When asked about his motivation to participate in the competition, he emphasized the opportunity to showcase his abilities, learn from fellow hackers, and contribute to the cybersecurity landscape in Africa. In a rapidly evolving technological landscape, our student recognizes the pressing need for addressing cybersecurity threats in Africa. He identifies social engineering, ransomware attacks, and data breaches as some of the most significant challenges faced by the continent today. Through his remarkable skills, he aims to play an instrumental role in fortifying defenses, protecting sensitive information, and raising awareness about these threats. Beyond his extraordinary achievement, he is optimistic about the impact this accolade will have on his future career and academic pursuits. With a humble yet ambitious demeanor, he aspires to contribute to advancing cybersecurity in Africa, urging fellow students to explore this field and actively safeguard digital infrastructures.
The GRIT Lab Africa competition featured a series of complex challenges designed to evaluate participants' skills in network security, penetration testing, cryptography, and vulnerability assessment. Participants were tasked with simulating real-world scenarios, responding to cyber threats, and devising effective countermeasures to safeguard against potential attacks. Throughout the 2-days Innovation Hackathon competition, Todunni demonstrated an excellent understanding of cybersecurity principles and an ability to navigate intricate systems flawlessly. His innovative solutions and unyielding determination set him apart from other talented peers, earning him GRIT Lab Africa's Top Hacker of the Year 2023.
We at Thomas Adewumi University take immense pride in nurturing students like Obafemi Oluwatodunni, who possesses remarkable talent and dedication to cybersecurity. Our State-of-the-art facilities and strong internet served as necessary support for this remarkable achievement, this not only reflects the quality of education and resources provided by our university but also reinforces our commitment to fostering a culture of excellence and innovation. As Todunni basks in his well-deserved glory, his achievement serves as an inspiration to his peers, encouraging them to reach new heights and further explore the exciting world of cybersecurity. The university community looks forward to witnessing more groundbreaking achievements from the students and supporting their future endeavors.
The resounding success of our student serves as an inspiration to aspiring hackers within and beyond the walls of our university. His triumph reinforces our institution's commitment to nurturing talent, fostering groundbreaking research, and empowering students to make a profound impact in their respective fields. Undoubtedly, the Top Hacker of the Year title at the GRIT Lab Africa solidifies our university's position as a leading institution for Artificial Intelligence, Excellence, Innovation, and Societal impact. This triumph sets the stage for even greater achievements, further cementing the university's position as a powerhouse in cybersecurity education and research.