Digital security solutions firm Tyfone is launching a new challenge at MIT focused on Internet of Things (IoT) security. Participants will be finding new ways to secure a Raspberry Pi-based IoT device or service by using the firm’s Connected Smart Card.

This challenge is made in coordination with the MIT Sandbox Innovation Fund Program and is open to MIT students in hope that the projects created during the challenge will encourage innovation in the area of IoT and security.

These projects can take the form of any type of IoT device from home automation to manufacturing, and even to create something that sits in its own unique category.

Project participants have 33 days to register at the official challenge site and submit their team’s project proposal by May 31.

Tyfone will select up to five proposals, with the selected teams receiving IoT Security Development Kits that include a Raspberry Pi, Tyfone’s Connected Smart Card, and other essentials. These teams will then receive their development kits and some initial training at MIT on June 13.

Deadline to launch their project will be September 6, and once the project is completed, they will submit a video of the idea in action, describing how it works and how it was created.

Projects are judged on three criteria: How it actually met the proposal requirements, How was the user experience and what was the level of security achieved.

Tyfone making everyone a winner (if you’re chosen)

Good news is — all five chosen teams will win something. The first place prize for this challenge is a cool $5,000, with cash prizes available for all five of the selected teams down to a $750 prize for fifth place.

“Mobile devices and the IoT are simultaneously expanding the threat-surface and exposing security vulnerabilities in connected technologies we have come to rely on,” according to Tyfone CEO Dr. Siva G. Narendra, “The problem is worsening with hundreds of billions of IoT devices that are getting connected to the Internet.”

The Internet of things is indeed growing at an incredible pace, and with a whole new generation of devices offering users quick and easy ways to gather and share data – including payment and identification information – with their environments, security is at the forefront of many security advocates’ minds.

According to MIT Sandbox executive director Jinane Abounadi, “We’re pleased to team up with Tyfone on the IoT Security Challenge contest. It’s a great fit with the MIT Sandbox Innovation Fund Program’s goal of helping students innovate, particularly in the IoT space.”