The US is considering relaxing army training for its cyber recruits. Photo: Jim Macmilan
Lt Gen Robert Brown said the army had to recruit people who were not typical candidates for a military career if it were to counter the growing threat of cyber attacks. It follows the Sony hacking scandal, allegedly instigated by North Korea.
At a briefing of the New America Foundation, Lt Gen Brown, the commander of the US Army Combined Arms Centre at Fort Leavenworth in Kansas, said: "We need to give serious consideration to how the US Army could combine the technical expertise of the 'Google generation' with its more traditional military skills.
"In order to gain an intellectual advantage over adversaries in cyberspace, we will need to tap into a talent pool that may not fit the stereotypical soldier profile."
He said the army needed people who could "anticipate and adapt to the rapid pace of innovation in the cyber world".
He added: "Many who have these skills are not natural candidates for a military career. They grew up on Google and wear ponytails. We need to look at ways to bring them into the Army without necessarily going through the same training procedures as our combat troops."
The US created a cyber command unit in 2009. By 2013 it had 13 cyber teams trained to protect the US in cyberspace, and another 27 to aid the US military and to protect Defence computer assets.
The Daily Telegraph, London