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Cybersecurity Drives Intelligence Agencies in From the Cold

May 06, 2019 / Mathew J. Schwartz

Intelligence agencies and cybersecurity: What a long, strange trip it's been. Flash back to 2000, when Richard C. Schaeffer, then the U.S. Defense Department's director of information assurance, showed up to Def Con to pitch the hacking community on government employment. "We've got some of the most sophisticated toys in the world if you'd like access to those toys," he told the Las Vegas audience. Attending that Def Con as a reporter, I saw evidence of intelligence agency representatives interfacing with the information security community - not just when outed during the annual "spot the fed" challenge - as a colleague of mine captured at the time. We were waiting for a press conference to commence in the media room, which was being held on condition that we all removed the batteries from our cell phones. "We apologize for the delay," a Def Con press attaché told us, killing time. "The CIA is caucusing in the men's room.&qu...