SÄPO Caught Off Guard

A record number of job applications have caught Sweden’s security police SÄPO off guard.

Hoping to generate some interest, the agency placed an ad in newspapers two weeks ago seeking 20 new recruits to add to its ranks.

What it got was 4,000 replies from applicants that, according to the advertisement, have knowledge of foreign and domestic politics, security issues and are willing work odd hours.

According to Torbjörn Ekblom, who is leading the agency’s recruiting program, that figure would be whittled down to 20, who will undergo a 1 1/2-year course focusing on combating terrorism, learning the tricks of spy craft and focusing on espionage, both international, domestic and corporate.

Ekblom said they won’t be secret agents as such, noting that the trainees will work in public. He did add though that ”most of their work will be secret.”

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