Getting hired by the military-industrial complex is generally the same as getting hired anywhere else. Someone will perform a background check, a criminal record check, and ask your references to see what kind of employee you’ve been in the past. However, there is now one major difference with getting hired by Raytheon that sets it apart from the rest: you can’t play War Thunder.
Why? Because War Thunder has become so notorious for players leaking classified or restricted military documents that merely playing the game is considered a security risk.
In a post to the official War Thunder subreddit, user Nafuwu recounted how a friend of theirs recently applied to Raytheon for a job. "As part of security clearance, a [private investigator] has to investigate the person, call up "witnesses", ie. friends," they said. "I was on the contact list, I get a call – asks basic questions like 'would he overthrow the government' or shit like that.
"And then… 'Does he play War Thunder?' Guys holy fuck we did it. War Thunder is officially a risk [to] national security."
In fact, it may be the first video game ever to be considered a national security risk. That's according to @TheChowderhead on Twitter, who noted that "in the past 11 months, no less than five War Thunder players have violated top secret clearances to post classified government intelligence on vehicles to argue for nerfs or buffs." Their Twitter profile doesn't say they're a spy, but apparently, this situation is considered "the funniest thing to happen in the infosec community in a long time."
Just to recap, War Thunder has been a hotbed of top-secret military documents for years. Back in 2021, a British national leaked classified documents on the Challenger 2 main battle tank, then months later someone did the same thing for the French Leclerc tank. Then in 2022, a player shared armament schematics for a Chinese tank round, and earlier this week, two separate players shared documents on the American F-16 and F-15E fighter jets and the AMRAAM air-to-air missile. Generally, these documents are shared to prove the inaccuracy of the game and to argue for changes to in-game performance, even though War Thunder developer Gaijin Entertainment has repeatedly stated ever since the first leak that War Thunder is a game and not intended to replicate the real-world performance of military hardware.
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