Unit 8200 is an Israeli Intelligence Corps unit responsible for collecting signal intelligence (SIGINT), code decryption, and cyber warfare. Military publications include references to Unit 8200 as the Central Collection Unit of the Intelligence Corps. It is comparable in its function to the United States’ National Security Agency and is a Ministry of Defense body just as the NSA is part of the United States Department of Defense. Spread across the country, the online soldiers of Unit 8200 are on the front line of Israel’s cyber wars 24/7, 365 days a year to identify possible threats and effectively neutralize them.
The unit is composed primarily of 18–21 year olds. As a result of the youth of the soldiers in the unit, and the shortness of their service period, the unit relies on selecting recruits with the ability for rapid adaptation and speedy learning. After school programs for 16–18 year olds, teaching computer coding and hacking skills, also serve as a feeder programs for the unit. Former Unit 8200 soldiers have, after completing their military service, gone on to founding and occupying top positions in many international IT companies and in Silicon Valley.