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City of London

School for girls

A (Code) Cracking Performance

Many congratulations to Eleanor and Malaika whose computer science prowess has earned CLSG joint second place nationally in the Cipher Challenge, a competition run by the University of Southampton and GCHQ.  

The school team, captained by Eleanor, had 100% success on all challenges leading up to the final challenge, which was released at the end of last term. Eleanor and Malaika cracked the first part of this challenge in just 8 minutes, while Part B – "famous for being devilishly difficult" according to their supervisor, Dr Brockington - took that bit longer. The girls explain, "we worked non-stop until 11 to try and crack it by the first deadline but it was just too difficult. However, we were both up working on it the next morning and, by lunchtime, it had been cracked!"  

This performance was enough to secure second place, something they are rightfully "so proud of". Certainly, as Dr Brockington enthuses, the overall deadline for solving that cipher was "26 days, and they did it in 10 hours with a team of only two people". This achievement is all the more impressive since Eleanor (year 12) and Malaika (year 11) are in different year group bubbles, so coordinated all their work via Teams!