Spy agencies will recruit foreign-born spooks for the first time

Spy agencies will recruit foreign-born spooks for the first time after rule-change

  • Applicants had to have at least a parent who is British or from approved country
  • Budding spies no longer need to prove their British parentage if they want to join
  • But James Bond hopefuls will still have to prove that they are a British citizen 

Aspiring spies no longer need to prove their British parentage if they want to join His Majesty’s secret service.

Britain’s spy agencies – MI6, MI5 and GCHQ – are relaxing recruitment rules from today to allow foreign-born recruits who have become British citizens.

Previously applicants had to have at least one parent who is British or hail from an approved list of other countries.

Britain’s spy agencies – MI6, MI5 and GCHQ – are relaxing recruitment rules from today to allow foreign-born recruits who have become British citizens

James Bond hopefuls will still have to prove they are a British citizen and go through a rigorous vetting process.

A spokesman for GCHQ, MI5 and MI6 said: ‘We perform best in our mission to keep the nation safe and further the UK’s interests when we reflect the diversity of the country we serve.’

Sources say the change in the eligibility requirements will help to ‘harness the best talent’.

A report warned yesterday that China’s bid for technical supremacy through its army of hackers poses the biggest single threat to Britain’s future cyber security.

A review by GCHQ’s National Cyber Security Centre said China was undertaking a ‘substantial global espionage campaign to meet political, socio-economic, and strategic objectives’.

Sources say the change in the eligibility requirements will help to ‘harness the best talent’. GCHQ is pictured above

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