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September 30, 2008
British intelligence recruits spies on Facebook


The MI6 building in London.

The unofficial MI6 group on Facebook.

British secret intelligence agency MI6 is now using the social networking site Facebook to recruit potential spies. The unofficial MI6 group on Facebook has over 2,000 members and is part of an ongoing attempt to expand its forces.

Chris Matyszczyk of the blog “Technically Incorrect” writes that using Facebook undermines the supposed covertness of the agency — a concern that might be warranted given that the MI6 recently sold a camera full of top-secret photos on Ebay by accident.

The “Blorge” blog writes that James Bond would turn in his grave because of the perceived low standards for applicants.

MI6’s Facebook group lists pages of comments and reactions from interested applicants, like Ryan Osborne, who said, “yea 4real, id love 2 b part of an undercover network.”

Earlier this month, 16 U.S. intelligence agencies urged analysts to use a closed social networking site to share information about al-Qaeda and other issues.

Social networking sites such as Facebook are increasingly used for job searching around the world, The Economist recently reported.

Photos courtesy of Flickr users stevecadman and AJC1 under a Creative Commons license.

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