Support The Moscow Times!

Military Woos Young Computer Programmers

The Defense Ministry is starting a wide-ranging "head hunt" for young computer programmers to develop new software for the armed forces, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Thursday.

Young people will be recruited straight after college into "scientific research units" in the Russian Armed Forces to develop "a software product that the army will need within the next five years," Shoigu said at a meeting with college rectors. He did not say what the software would be designed to do.

The new units should help bring about "a new generation of people who will advance military science," Shoigu said.

Shoigu first aired the idea of scientific research units in March, proposing as a first step that undergraduate students be involved in defense R&D projects, which would count toward their mandatory one-year military service.

In February, President Vladimir Putin personally instructed the Federal Security Service to set up a unified system to detect and counter computer-hacking attacks on Russia's IT resources.

Putin made his appeal just a week after computer security company Kaspersky Lab announced that it had detected highly sophisticated malware, dubbed Red October, that targeted "diplomatic, governmental and scientific research institutions" in Eastern Europe and former Soviet republics.

Russia's armed forces are in the midst of a major program of reform, including a gradual transition to an all-volunteer makeup, organizational changes and equipment upgrades.

Related articles:

… we have a small favor to ask.

As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just 2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.


Read more