The UK’s newly launched National Crime Agency (NCA) has begun a major recruitment drive for cyber crime fighters and intelligence officers.
The agency plans to recruit up to 400 trainee cyber and intelligence officers in the next year in the first phase of a multi-million pound recruitment campaign.
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Recruits will undergo a two-year training programme to become fully-fledged NCA officers to help lead the UK’s fight against serious and organised crime.
Cyber trainees will work with the NCA’s National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU), while intelligence trainees will help enhance the agency’s knowledge of organised crime at home and abroad.
The NCCU sits alongside four commands making up the NCA: Organised Crime, Economic Crime, Border Policing and Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP).
The new posts, with a starting salary of £22,407 rising to £24,717 after two years' training, are open to candidates over 18 years old and will be based at the NCA’s offices in Warrington and London.
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As an NCA officer, successful recruits will join a team of more than 4,000 specially trained officers working to fight serious and organised crime, including global cyber crime operations.
Hidden “deep web” internet operations is one of the first areas of investigation for the NCA, after the arrest of four UK men in connection with online drugs market Silk Road in October.
One 27-year-old technical officer within the NCCU said: “I thought joining this organisation would be a great way to pit my wits against the top criminals. Since joining I have realised just how crucial our work is in protecting the UK. Each day brings a new challenge and we're pushing the boundaries of law enforcement capability.”
The NCA said young people who have left school or college with limited qualifications could still be strong candidates providing they can prove their knowledge or interest in the cyber or intelligence world.
Hidden deep web internet operations is one of the first areas of investigation for the NCA
Applicants will be required to complete a security-focused questionnaire as a pre-qualifier. The next stage will include a number of other online assessments to test numerical, verbal and logic skills.
The NCA expects more than 1,000 candidates to make it through to the final stage during the first two weeks of December.
The NCA’s deputy director general, Phil Gormley, said: “I want roles at the NCA to be the career of choice for people wanting a future in law enforcement. The agency will be vastly different to those that came before it and we need to build our crime-fighting capacity and capability,” he said.
Gormley said the trainee programme is part of the NCA’s goal to open the agency up to new people and new ideas, diversify the workforce and modernise the workplace, while transferring expertise gained through years of experience.
The NCA, which became officially operational at the beginning of October, is aimed at transforming the UK’s response to serious and organised crime through a single law enforcement agency to harness and co-ordinate resources across the UK.