GCHQ seeks Jane Bond school­girls

Sunday Express - - CRISIS IN MENTAL HEALTH - By Kat Hopps

A CODE-CRACK­ING con­test for girls aged 12 to 13 is aimed at re­cruit­ing more GCHQ fe­male spies and cy­ber fight­ers.

Women ac­count for 11 per cent of the cur­rent global cy­ber work­force, ac­cord­ing to the in­tel­li­gence agency famed for its fe­male Sec­ond World War staff.

The Cy­berFirst Girls com­pe­ti­tion, run by GCHQ’s Na­tional Cy­ber Se­cu­rity Cen­tre, will test par­tic­i­pants in four ar­eas: cryp­tog­ra­phy, cy­ber se­cu­rity, logic and cod­ing, and net­work­ing. The teams of four will be whit­tled down to a grand fi­nal to be held in Ed­in­burgh in March.

Baroness Trump­ing­ton, who died last week aged 96, was one of the most famous fe­male code-break­ers. She was among 8,000 women based at Bletch­ley Park who helped to de­ci­pher Nazi codes.

The women ac­counted for 75 per­cent of Bletch­ley’s staff, al­though credit has gone to the male code-break­ers, most fa­mously Alan Tur­ing. Now the Gov­ern­ment is hop­ing to show girls a ca­reer in on­line es­pi­onage can be equally “ex­cit­ing”.

Dig­i­tal Minister Mar­got James said: “We want to show girls across the coun­try cy­ber se­cu­rity is ex­cit­ing, re­ward­ing and chal­leng­ing.

“The Cy­berFirst Girls com­pe­ti­tion will help in­spire the work­force of the fu­ture and show girls that what­ever their back­ground or in­ter­est, a ca­reer in cy­ber se­cu­rity is ful­fill­ing.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.