Cyberwarfare has been around, in one form or another, for over a decade. However, for much of that time cyberwarfare has been an irregular tactic, mostly comprising of government enlisting the help of young hacker groups and technologically savvy supporters to attack enemies. In other words, cyberwarfare between nations looked less like conventional conflicts and more like street battles between haphazard militias. However, this is quickly changing. More and more governments are developing the human and technological capacity to turn cyber warfare into a mainstream weapon of statecraft. In an excellent article in CNN Money, David Goldman reports on the changing face of cyberwarfare and its implications on the future of international conflict.

Using a wide variety of both public and private sector resources and research as evidence, Goldman reports that this year will likely be the year “when nation-sponsored cyberwarfare goes mainstream.” Goldman points out that according to James Lewis, a cybersecurity expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC, more than a dozen of the 15 largest military powers currently in the world are actively building cyberwarfare programs. Furthermore, experts at both Intel’s McAfee Labs and the security company Zscaler, claim that governments are scrambling to develop up their cyberwarfare capacity, both to help them attack their enemies, and also to defend themselves from increasingly common cyberattacks by rival states.

However, it is not just national governments who are turning to cyberwarfare to attack their foes, non-state actors such as hackivists are becoming major players in cyberwarfare as they use their knowledge of digital systems to bring down the websites of organizations they disagree with and steal data to further their own purposes. That said, Goldman points out that the most famous hackivist group, Anonymous, is starting to decline because many companies and governments have been strengthening their digital defenses against the main types of attacks the group is famous for.

What does this mean for the cleared job seeker? In short: jobs. Cybersecurity jobs are one of the few true growth sectors in the federal government and with defense contractors. While many organizations are facing tough financial decisions in recent months, most are still continuing to aggressively hire cybersecurity workers in an effort to protect their networks against attacks and contract out that experience to federal agencies in need.

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Mike Jones is a researcher, writer, and analyst on national and international security. He lives in the DC area.