Hey DEF CON Attendees, the NSA Wants to Poach You

"At NSA, we don't crack codes and develop new encryption algorithms just for the fun of it (but don't tell our tech teams that)."

(Photo: NSA)

DEF CON, which is the world’s largest hacker conference that’s been around since the heady dot-com days, is a fertile ground for good ol’ fashioned startup poaching. But it looks like citizens of Startupland hankering for engineering talent might have a new competitor, ‘cuz you know who else is looking to swipe some hardcore hackers for their employee roster? The National Security Agency. Amurrica!

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After sending its chief to the conference, the NSA has created a special Careers page for DEF CON attendees with the hopes that it can lure some talented hackers towards a cushy government gig. But, don’t think you’re guaranteed a job as a computer hacking spy just because you showed up to DEF CON. They have some pretty stringent guidelines for who exactly they’re looking for:

  • You won Capture the Flag, Mystery Challenge or any other DEF CON® challenge.
  • You have a thing for the pleasantries of a full-time job.
  • You work or consult for a security company but want to relocate to the front lines of cyber operations.
  • Even if you didn’t win a black Über badge, as long as you held your own at DEF CON®, we want to talk to you

Alright, we suppose “holding your own” is a pretty broad requirement. But you do have to be a U.S. citizen. The one good thing is that they seem to be unfazed by those of you with a red X or two on your permanent record. “If you have a few, shall we say, indiscretions in your past, don’t be alarmed. You shouldn’t automatically assume you won’t be hired. If you’re really interested, you owe it to yourself to give it a shot.”

Admitting to indiscretions in a job interview with the NSA? Guys, that’s how they get you. *dons tinfoil hat*

Hey DEF CON Attendees, the NSA Wants to Poach You