Anyone who is still doubting the power of social networking in general and Facebook in particular can now suspend their disbelief. Instead of targeting the cream of the crop in universities up and down the country, the British secret services are turning to Facebook to find their next generation of spies. If he were dead, James Bond would be turning in his grave.
In generations gone by, the British Secret Intelligence Service, MI6, would have carefully targeted potential candidates to become spies. Most of these would-be Bonds would have attended leading universities such as Oxford and Cambridge, and been approached to join the service and protect Queen and country.
Now, MI6 is taking a different approach, and using Facebook, an altogether more humble setting, to recruit the next generation of terrorism-stoppers. Possibly taking its cue from a similar advertising effort by the CIA last year, MI6, most famous for being the spiritual home of James Bond, is trying to entice new spies in to the service by using Facebook.
The Guardian reports that the three new adverts take the following form:-
Graduates of all ages can develop long-term careers as operational officers, collecting and analysing global intelligence.
Time for a career change? MI6 can use your skills. Join us as an operational officer collecting and analysing global intelligence to protect the UK.
A career in world events? Help influence world events, protect the UK. Operational officer roles collecting and analysing global intelligence.
One is obviously targeting university graduates, while one is targeting those who are bored in their present jobs, and the last seems to be aiming for people who want to be a part of protecting the UK.
These Facebook ads are part of a larger campaign begun in 2006 which has already seen MI6 advertising in newspapers and on radio. This change in recruiting policy was brought in so as to attract people that better “reflect the society” of the present day.
Facebook may seem a bizarre choice of avenue for such a high-powered, important organisation, but the targeted adverts that Facebook offers means it’s a brilliant way of reaching potential employees who otherwise may have been missed.
With a new James Bond movie, Quantum Of Solace, due out next month, applications are likely to go through the roof. After all, who wouldn’t want to have a license to kill, a fast car, and the power to get any member of the opposite sex you desire. What do you mean it’s not actually like that?