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[ISN] Wanted : top hackers as trackers
From: InfoSec News (isnc4i.org)
Date: Wed May 14 2003 - 00:17:29 CDT
09 May, 2003
Police are offering 20 computer nerds the opportunity to become highly
paid spies working for the NSW counter-terrorist unit.
Successful applicants will not have to undergo the rigours of police
academy training or uniform duties but will be designated special
constables, with wage offers above the $44,000 starting rate for
regular police constables.
The computer spies most likely university computer science graduates
or highly skilled IT workers will be offered wages of between $60,000
The high wage offer to civilian employees is a first for the police
service but seen as necessary by the Commissioner, Ken Moroney, to
recruit the best computer specialists from the private sector.
The successful applicants will join a newly created unit within the
police Special Service Group that will be called the State Electronic
Superintendent Tony Jeffries said advertisements for the hacker
sleuths would be placed in newspapers tomorrow.
The Special Service Group also hopes to recruit civilians with
technical inventing skills a sort of James Bond-style agent "Q" to
develop or adapt new equipment for use by police in covert or
day-to-day field operations.
A unit called the Advanced Technology Centre was created last year
within the SSG to develop equipment for police operations. It has
already created a "dog cam" that can be attached to a police dog that
is sent into situations such as sieges.
The Advanced Technology Unit is developing a video camera for police
vehicles that will film encounters with the public.
The electronic evidence recruits will not be allowed to tell anyone
even their partners the nature of projects assigned to them.
They will examine computer drives and even microchips from cars and
mobile phones of people suspected of having links with terrorist
Superintendent Jeffries said the cyber sleuths would examine computer
pathways for hidden information and that staff selected would undergo
training in forensic analysis so that any potential data relating to
terrorist activities in NSW could be used in court in prosecutions of
In the past NSW police have had to contract out such work to private
enterprise, but last year Deputy Commissioner Andrew Scipione, the
overall commander of counter-terrorism units within the force,
successfully lobbied the Government for an extra $1.75 million to
create the computer spy unit.
"We will have to train them in skills of forensic analysis but we
don't have to train them [successful applicants] in any computer
sciences because they will already have that expertise,"
Superintendent Jeffries said. "In the past the force has paid for
officers to obtain their IT qualifications only to see them lured away
to the private sector.
"We have had trouble retaining the officers with the skills we need,
so recruiting from outside is a better option."
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