Team Belgium Wins Top Prize for ABE App Balancing Privacy & Security

• NTT Research held a hackathon on attribute-based encryption (ABE).
• The winning demonstration from Team Belgium was an application for ABE that protects images containing private or sensitive information.
• Honorable mentions went to NTT DATA teams from Italy and Romania.

NTT Research Hackathon Fosters Privacy and Security

NTT Research, Inc., a division of NTT, recently hosted a hackathon focused on attribute-based encryption (ABE). Five teams from around the world participated in the two-week event which took place at the NTT Research offices in Sunnyvale, California. A panel of judges selected Team Belgium’s “Confidentiality in Images” presentation video as the winner. Honorable mentions were given to teams representing NTT DATA in Italy and Romania.

Winning Entry: “Confidentiality in Images”

The Belgian team, consisting of Senior Software Engineer Pascal Mathis and Data Scientist Jean-Philippe Cabay of NTT Global, developed an ABE application that protects images containing private or sensitive information. Their goal was to apply ABE to images to ensure fine-grained control over who can access certain information like building logos, faces, license plates and underlying metadata with GPS coordinates. They created an ETL pipeline consisting of three steps: detecting and labeling objects; encrypting images; and storing blurred images in a database along with their corresponding metadata and labels.

Judging Panel

The hackathon’s judging panel consisted of representatives from NTT DATA, NTT Research and the NTT Service Innovation Laboratory. The judges evaluated each team’s demonstration based on its potential impact, originality/creativity, completeness/functionality, scalability/maintainability and visibility/presentation materials.

NTT R&D Forum

The winning entry was announced at the virtual business conference known as the NTT R&D Forum that took place November 16th – 18th. During this event all five teams delivered presentations about their projects with videos highlighting their applications for ABE technology.


Overall it was a successful endeavor for both participants who gained new insights into ABE technology along with the judges who got to experience first hand how effective data privacy solutions are being applied through innovative approaches such as this one presented by Team Belgium at the hackathon held by NTT Research Inc..