The U.K.’s Joint Cyber Reserve Unit that was announced in September by Defense Secretary Philip Hammond is recruiting, and they have not ruled out the possibility that convicted hackers may be considered eligible for the cyber warrior unit, officials said.
The unit’s commander, Lt Col Michael White, said a prior conviction for computer-related crimes would not prevent recruitment if the candidates were able to meet other standards in the vetting process, saying they would “look at individuals in the round.”
“I think if they could get through the security process, then if they had that capability that we would like, then if the vetting authority was happy with that, why not?” White said. “We’re looking at capability development, rather than setting hard and fast rules about individual personality traits.”
The nation’s Cyber Reserve Force which will engage in both defensive as well as offensive operations, which could include attacks designed to disable enemy communications, weapons and other critical military equipment.
Hammond confirmed White’s statements that the force could include convicted hackers, saying “each individual case would be looked at on its merits. The conviction would be examined in terms of how long ago it was, how serious it was, what sort of sentence had followed. So I can’t rule it out.”
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