Fascinated with the James Bond films? Then the character of Q is surely no stranger to you.
But what may surprise you is that Britain’s intelligence agency has just revealed that the real-life equivalent of Q is a woman.
Alex Younger, chief of Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service (MI6), revealed this at the Women in IT Awards in London in a bid to recruit more women to join MI6, especially those with a scientific or technological background.
“If any of you would like to join us … the real-life Q is looking forward to meeting you and I’m pleased to report that the real-life Q is a woman,” he said.
In the Bond movies, Q, one of the best-known characters, is a boffin coming up with ever more imaginative gadgets who has always been portrayed as a man.
Younger also said that gadgets have always been an integral part of the intelligence community. “Technology now is at the core of what we do in a way that it wasn’t before,” he said.
There has been less secrecy surrounding the British intelligence agency after U.S. whistleblower Edward Snowden in 2013 leaked classified documents to the press.
Younger, in an unprecedented move, delivered a speech to the media in the MI6 office in 2016.