May 25 — Unit 8200 is an elite branch of the Israel Defense Forces, or IDF, that specializes in computer security and murkier, more controversial stuff, such as espionage and cyber attacks. The Unit resembles the National Security Agency (NSA) in the U.S. So it’s not that surprising that Unit 8200 and the IDF would give rise to clever, interesting tech startups. What’s remarkable is how Israel has turned its soldiers into entrepreneurs. Today, Israel has about 5,500 startups, and it added 1,400 new ones just last year. It has become a world leader not just in security but in chip, printing, biotech, and corporate software, as well. In this episode of Hello World Bloomberg Businessweek’s Ashlee Vance goes to Israel to discover how the IDF became such an efficient technology engine.
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