20 Jul 2022

UK-US PETs prize challenges now open for applications

The challenges, aiming to identify privacy-enhancing technologies to help tackle financial crime and public health emergencies, will award cash prizes from a combined pool of £1.3 million.

They were first announced at the Summit for Democracy in December last year, and today further detail has been announced and applications have opened.  The challenges are made up of two tracks. Track 1 is called Tranforming financial crime prevention and Track 2 is Forecasting to bolster pandemic response capabilities. There is also an option to design one generalised solution that works for both scenarios for broader applicability.

For each of the challenges, the aim is to encourage innovators to develop privacy-enhancing technologies that enable AI models to be trained on sensitive data without organisations having to share any raw data. For Track 1, assessors will be looking for end-to-end privacy-preserving federated learning solutions that can flag anomalous payments, by using synthetic datasets developed by SWIFT. For Track 2, solutions should seek to forecast an individual's risk of infection, and participants will be able to access a synthetic dataset developed by the University of Virginia’s Biocomplexity Institute.

The challenge is split into three phases, and those interested in applying will first need to complete a technical white paper setting out their approach. More information, including the technical briefs, can be found here - and specifically for innovators in the UK, the application can be submitted here.

Successful applicants will have their solutions showcased at the next Summit for Democracy conved by President Biden in the first half of 2023.

If you would like to learn more about the competition, Innovate UK is hosting a briefing event on 4 August, which you can sign up to hereThe competition closes on 19 September.


Dani Dhiman

Dani Dhiman

Policy Manager, Artificial Intelligence and Digital Regulation, techUK

Dani joined techUK in October 2021 as Policy Manager for Data.

She formerly worked in Vodafone Group's Public Policy & Public Affairs team as well as the Directorate’s Office, supporting the organisation’s response to the EU Recovery & Resilience facility, covering the allocation of funds and connectivity policy reforms. Dani has also previously worked as a researcher for Digital Catapult, looking at the AR/VR and creative industry.

Dani has a BA in Human, Social & Political Sciences from the University of Cambridge, focussing on Political Philosophy, the History of Political Thought and Gender studies.

[email protected]

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