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 on Thursday.
“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. However, he described any suggestion that Israel is scouting abroad for cyber-warriors as “far fetched”, pointing out that the army has the pick of every Israeli 18 year-old obligated to three years military service.