Britain will build a dedicated capability to counter-attack in cyberspace and, if necessary, to strike in cyberspace.

As part of MOD’s full-spectrum military capability, the Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond, has announced that the department is set to recruit hundreds of computer experts as cyber reservists to help defend the UK’s national security, working at the cutting-edge of the nation’s cyber defences.

Mr Hammond confirmed the creation of a new Joint Cyber Reserve which will see reservists working alongside regular forces to protect critical computer networks and safeguard vital data. He said:

In response to the growing cyber threat, we are developing a full-spectrum military cyber capability, including a strike capability, to enhance the UK’s range of military capabilities. Increasingly, our defence budget is being invested in high-end capabilities such as cyber and intelligence and surveillance assets to ensure we can keep the country safe.

The Cyber Reserves will be an essential part of ensuring we defend our national security in cyberspace. This is an exciting opportunity for internet experts in industry to put their skills to good use for the nation, protecting our vital computer systems and capabilities.

A computer circuit board (stock image)
A computer circuit board (stock image) [Picture: Harland Quarrington, Crown copyright]

Recruitment

The creation of the Joint Cyber Reserve will represent a significant increase in the number of reservists employed in cyber and information assurance, and members of the Joint Cyber Reserve will provide support to the Joint Cyber Unit (Corsham), the Joint Cyber Unit (Cheltenham) and other information assurance units across Defence.

Recruiting for the Joint Cyber Reserve will commence in October and target 3 sectors: regular personnel leaving the Armed Forces, current and former reservists with the necessary skills, and individuals with no previous military experience, but with the technical knowledge, skills, experience and aptitude to work in this highly-specialised area.

All personnel applying to join will be subject to a security clearance process.

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