UAE students develop high-tech tool that can prevent scams for people of determination

Coders come up with innovative projects as part of InnovateX Hackathon at 42 Abu Dhabi in collaboration with the Ministry of Interior


Ashwani Kumar

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Photos: Supplied
Photos: Supplied

Published: Wed 29 May 2024, 12:03 PM

Last updated: Wed 29 May 2024, 11:21 PM

An AI-powered voice assistant and a tool to detect and prevent scams are among the several cutting-edge technologies developed by the students of 42 Abu Dhabi, for people of determination (PoD).

These cool innovative projects have been created as part of the InnovateX Hackathon held at 42 Abu Dhabi in collaboration with the UAE Ministry of Interior. The hackathon focused on enhancing the ministry’s application for people of determination. Students at Abu Dhabi’s disruptive coding school shared their experiences with Khaleej Times, of making new solutions to improve the platform’s accessibility features.

Abdullah Alhammadi, a coder, noted the hackathon not only tested coding abilities but also deepened his understanding of the challenges faced by people of determination.

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Abdullah Alhammadi.
Abdullah Alhammadi.

“It was a humbling experience to design and implement technology that has the potential to improve accessibility and independence for so many individuals,” said Alhammadi, part of Infosec Hero, which won first place in the gamification and PoD section. The team’s project introduces a set of innovative features that can be integrated into the ministry’s official site. It includes an AI voice assistant that helps users navigate the site, change settings for visibility, fill out forms, and complete services using locally accented speech for friendly and intuitive interaction.

“I am grateful for the chance to contribute to such a meaningful cause and am excited about the future possibilities that lie ahead. This experience has strengthened my commitment to leveraging my skills to address real-world problems and drive positive social change,” Alhammadi said.

Infosec Hero.
Infosec Hero.

Infosec Hero also made Scam Shield, a gamification feature that educates users on scam recognition and prevention, rewarding correct actions and providing a certificate of cyber awareness upon completion, and an interactive accessibility map displaying detailed accessibility ratings of physical service locations across Abu Dhabi. It helps users with specific needs plan their visits effectively and motivates service entities to improve their facilities to accommodate everyone, thereby enhancing the overall user experience and reducing environmental impacts from unnecessary visits.

Ahmed Salem.
Ahmed Salem.

Alhammadi’s teammate Ahmed Salem is excited after using his coding skills to make a real difference.

“Working on enhancing the MoI application for people of determination, we focused on improving accessibility features and ensuring an inclusive user experience. 42 Abu Dhabi provided us with invaluable support, resources, and mentorship, enabling us to innovate and develop advanced digital solutions. This collaboration has truly empowered us to create a platform that allows everyone in our community to interact seamlessly with MoI services,” Salem noted.

GoveUnityVerse came second followed by Kudos and the Alchemists, who shared the third spot.

Marcos Muller Habig.
Marcos Muller Habig.

Marcos Muller Habig, acting CEO of 42 Abu Dhabi noted the coding school has been committed to pushing the boundaries of digital innovation and empowering its coders to contribute to the UAE’s digital transformation.

“We’re proud to have fostered inclusivity and accessibility as part of this hackathon’s theme. Through this collaboration with the Ministry of Interior, we ensured that our students’ innovations are aligned with the real-world needs of our communities. Our aim was to achieve a more inclusive future, where technology serves as a bridge to empower every individual in the UAE and beyond,” Habig underlined.


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