It looks like all this talk of cyber warriors, and elite teams of internet butt kickers is being stymied by a lack of skilled hackers willing to work for the men in black.
While the US military’s Cyber Command is due to quadruple in size by 2015 with 4,000 new personnel while Britain announced a new Joint Cyber Reserve last month, Reuters claims that there is little chance of the jobs being filled.
To make matters worse, every time a hacker is hired, they are often headhunted by corporations.
Chris Finan, who is now a senior fellow at the Truman National Security Project, warned that there was not enough human capital for cyber security plans.
Part of the problem is culture. A hacker will choose where they get a lot of dosh, have a good lifestyle and a lack of bureaucracy. Neither of which are the sort of things that a government job offers them.
Governments say that most cyber expertise remains in the private sector where firms bid for cyber expertise.
To make matters worse, to get a government job you need a degree, yet a western university degree is considered too theoretical to do much that is useful.
Hackers don’t need a computer science degree as long as they can do the tricky jobs such as finding bugs in software, identifying elusive infections and reverse engineering computer viruses.
The only way the government is attracting hackers is to appeal to people’s sense of public service and patriotism. This is a little tricky when most of them are anti-establishment.
Russia, China, Iran and North Korea solve the problem by doing deals with their own criminal hacker community to borrow their expertise to assist with attacks.