TIL that in an attempt to make his spy novels feel more authentic, author John Le Carré is credited with coining a number of terms for his fictional intelligence agency (terms like mole, honey trap, pavement artist, asset babysitter) which have become common terms used in real intelligence agencies.

MI8, or Military Intelligence, Section 8 was a British Military Intelligence group responsible for signals intelligence and was created in 1914. It originally consisted of four sections: MI8(a), which dealt with wireless policy; MI8(b), based at the General Post Office, dealt with commercial and trade cables; MI8(c) dealt with the distribution of intelligence derived from censorship; and MI8(d), which liaised with the cable companies. During World War I MI8 officers were posted to the cable terminals at Poldhu Point and Mullion in Cornwall and Clifden in County Galway, continued until 1917 when the work was taken over by the Admiralty. In WW2, MI8 was responsible for the extensive War Office Y Group and briefly, for the Radio Security Service.


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