UK Intelligence Agency GCHQ Will Pay Student Hackers

The UK’s digital spy agency, the GCHQ has placed a notice for open applications for the surveillance agency’s two summer schools in 2016. Students will be paid £250 a week from the £3.2bn budget award set by Chancellor of the Exchequer, Peter Osborne.

It has been a well-known fact that it uses computer network exploitation, CNE. The GCHQ hacks into computers, smartphones, and networks in the UK, as well as abroad.

Osborne and the GCHQ have taken this step to stay ahead of the curve for future Snowden-type activity. The GCHQ admits the private sector offers higher pay and attracts computer white hat experts away from government service.

The summer program for the cyber curious will provide an opportunity to work alongside world-class experts while contributing to society and keeping the UK  citizens safe. The FBI in the US faces the same financial competition from the private sector and has actively recruited. Last August, the FBI set up a booth at the annual Black Hat event in Las Vegas to recruit for the bureau’s Cyber Division.

An excerpt from the listing read:

Does the world of Cyber intrigue you? Do you want to get your head around how the internet works in more detail? With GCHQ’s unique six-week Cyber Summer School running in three locations across the UK, we are offering you the chance to do just that!

Not only do you gain exciting new experiences, but we’ll give you free accommodation for the six-week course and you’ll also receive £250 per week!

The GCHQ program is in its second year and utilizes four sites across the UK to meet demand and place students into permanent positions at the GCHQ. The requirements to enter the Cyber Exposure program are for A-level students who have five GCSEs, including Math and English. The course will begin July 11 and run through August 19 at the Scarborough, the Manchester area and the Thames Valley.

Also read: UK ISP TalkTalk Breach Could Compromise 4 Million Users

A higher quality level training program, Cyber Insider, will be held July 4 to September 9 in Cheltenham at GCHQ home location. Applications are open for first or second-year university students. Cyber experts and leading world-cyber experts will speak during the term to bring the training to a high level of cyber instruction.

Applications will be accepted until close on March 7, and are encourage students studying for their first degree in Computer Science, Physics, Math, or a closely related course to apply. Those interested in learning problem-solving will not be turned away. The base £50 per day or up to £250 per week, attendance permitting, excluding bank holidays includes free accommodation.

Image from Flickr.