ISRAEL INVESTS MILLIONS IN DRIVE FOR ELITE ‘CYBER WARRIORS’

London Telegraph on November 1, 2012, reported that Israel has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in a drive to recruit an elite force of “cyber warriors”. Excerpts below:

The Jewish state is facing a dire shortage of “cyber-combat troops” and is scouring the Jewish Diaspora for exceptional, teenage computer minds to recruit to its cyber unit Intelligence Corps Unit 8200, a leading Israeli newspaper reported.

“It has become clear that the demand for soldiers in this field is growing, which is why we’re searching for solutions not only in Israel but abroad as well,” a top officer in the Manpower Directorate told the Yedioth Aranoth.

The Israeli military has made cyber warfare a dominant priority as it looks ahead to the next five years. Military Intelligence Chief Major General Aviv Kochavi is reported to have allocated £320 million to his cyber programme.

“Cyber readiness is one of the new pillars in our plan, including both defence and offence,” Major General Isaac Ben Israel confirmed.

Major General Ben Israel is Israel’s leading cyber warfare expert, widely acknowledged to be the architect of the air strike that decimated a Syrian nuclear facility in 2007. The attack was possible only because Syrian air defence systems were hacked and disabled minutes before.

There were reports of a similar communications blackout in Khartoum shortly before the explosion at the Sudanese arms factory last month.

“Our closest enemy is Iran, which declared a year and a half ago that it had created a cyber command whose goal was to fight Israel and the US,” Major General Ben Israel said.

“Cyber technology is a new weapon in the old business of warfare. If we want to defend ourselves, we have to dominate this field,” he added.

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