Expert warns of generational gap in Western intelligence services

Security expert Kevin O’Brien has given an interview to Reuters news agency, in which he warns of “serious generational differences and disparities between [intelligence] managers’ and analysts’ cognitive outlooks”. The gap between older, “Generation Y” intelligence employees and the “digital generation”, is rapidly becoming apparent, as twenty-something spies and analysts are entering the intelligence job market in large numbers. O’Brien says the new generation of recruits features strong cyber skills and thinking habits shaped online. What is more, the way these new recruits process information poses “a generational test” for Western espionage organizations, which are desperately trying to deepen their knowledge and understanding of online-savvy and progressively more transnational militant groups. O’Brien’s interview, and his latest paper on the subject, can be accessed here.

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Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

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