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Contractors Vie For Plum Work, Hacking For U.s.

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Terry Gillette and Scott Chase of Raytheon

Terry Gillette and Scott Chase run a Raytheon unit that finds flaws in Pentagon computers.

Gregg Matthews / The New York Times

The U.S. government’s urgent push into cyberwarfare has set off a rush among the biggest military companies for billions of dollars in new defense contracts. The exotic nature of the work, coupled with the deep recession, is enabling the companies to attract top young talent that once would have gone to Silicon Valley. And the race to develop weapons that defend against, or initiate, computer attacks has given rise to thousands of "hacker soldiers" within the Pentagon who can blend the new capabilities into the nation's war planning.

Nearly all of the largest military companies — including Northrop Grumman, General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin and Raytheon — have major cyber contracts with the military and intelligence agencies. The companies have been moving quickly to lock up the relatively small number of experts with the training and creativity to block the attacks and design countermeasures.

From The New York Times

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