UPDATE 1/25: Raytheon Technologies has been in touch to state that the company does not want to know if potential candidates play War Thunder. Their video game habits don’t factor into the interview process. Each person is only asked about their education, employment, and criminal history. “Sorry to be the one who poured cold water on a fun story!” a spokesperson says.
Redditor Add Fiat 6616 Pls has also now admitted “the story was made up,” but insists they do have a friend who works at Raytheon and that private investigators are used at the company. Quite frankly, we should take both those statements with a large grain of salt.
Original Story 1/24:
Playing the military simulation War Thunder isn’t recommended if you ever want to work for a company involved in national security.
As GamesRadar reports, a user going by the name Add Fiat 6616 Pls posted on the War Thunder subreddit earlier this week explaining how a friend of his had applied for a job at aerospace and defense conglomerate Raytheon Technologies. As part of the security clearance process, a private investigator is used to contact the candidates “witnesses,” which is shorthand for their friends.
Add Fiat 6616 Pls was one of those friends and therefore received a call to answer a range of questions in an attempt to discover if the candidate’s lifestyle raised any red flags. One of those question was: “Does he play War Thunder?”
The question makes sense as part of a security check and national security assessment after you realize how much classified information has leaked via the game over the past few years.
War Thunder is a free-to-play vehicular combat online multiplayer game developed by Russian game developer Gaijin Entertainment (which relocated to Budapest in 2015). Since 2021, there have been six incidents of restricted or classified documents being leaked during discussions about the accuracy of the vehicles used in the game.
The latest incident happened on Jan. 18 when 13 documents detailing the McDonnell Douglas F-15E Strike Eagle were posted by a player. Two days earlier, a flight manual for the F-16 fighter jet was posted during another discussion about the AIM-120 Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM). Before that, an armour layout for the UHT-665 Eurocopter Tiger, an image of the Chinese DTC10-125 tungsten penetrator, classified documents of the Leclerc tank, and the Challenger 2 tank were also shared.
So, if your goal is to work for a company that carries out such thorough background and security checks, don’t play War Thunder. Alternatively, don’t tell any of your friends and family if you do enjoy the game.