Cyber Capability Development Lead

    • Laurel, MD

Are you passionate about making impactful technical contributions to critical national security cyber challenges?

Do you love doing the impossible and collaborating with outstanding software reverse engineers and developers to build jaw-dropping proof-of-concept capabilities?

If so, we're looking for someone like you to join our innovative team at APL!

We are seeking an inventive leader to envision innovative ways to exploit embedded systems before our adversaries do. We have world-class facilities uniquely tailored to analyzing communications systems, transportation systems, and critical infrastructure. We strive to cultivate an innovative and collaborative team environment where engineers can hack the latest technologies to understand how they work and how to break them.

As a member of our group, you will…

  • Lead teams in identifying vulnerabilities or security weaknesses stemming from publicly disclosed vulnerabilities or previously unknown vulnerabilities,
  • Exploiting embedded systems
  • Build innovative and mission-aligned proof-of-principle capabilities and/or mitigations that can be deployed within operational constraints
  • Mentor aspiring engineers
  • Propose new ideas to internal and external funding opportunities
  • Circulate knowledge by clearly articulating ideas through papers and presentations to team members, APL management, and government decision makers.


We are looking for team leads that have attained a degree in Computer Engineering, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, or a related technical degree.

You meet our minimum qualifications for the job if you have...
  • Proficiency with software debuggers, static analysis tools (IDA Pro, Binary Ninja, Ghidra, etc.), and symbolic execution tools
  • Expertise with one or more programming languages including C/C and Python
  • Familiarity with Unix/Linux operating systems and embedded systems development toolchains
  • Experience reading or writing assembly (x86/x64, Arm, PowerPC, MIPS, or others)
  • A Bachelor’s degree with 7 or more years of relevant professional experience and 2 or more years of experience leading software development teams
  • An active Top Secret security clearance and the ability to obtain a TS/SCI with Polygraph clearance. If selected, you will be subject to a government security clearance investigation and must meet the requirements for access to classified information. Eligibility requirements include U.S. citizenship.

You'll go above and beyond our minimum requirements if you have …
  • 5 or more years of experience successfully leading software development teams
  • Obtained a Master’s degree or Ph.D. in a relevant field
  • Previously identified and responsibly disclosed zero-day vulnerabilities
  • Contributed to open source projects.

Why work at APL?

The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) brings world-class expertise to our nation’s most critical defense, security, space and science challenges. While we are dedicated to solving complex challenges and pioneering new technologies, what makes us truly outstanding is our culture. We offer a vibrant, welcoming atmosphere where you can bring your authentic self to work, continue to grow, and build strong connections with inspiring teammates.

At APL, we celebrate our differences and encourage creativity and bold, new ideas. Our employees enjoy generous benefits, including a robust education assistance program, unparalleled retirement contributions, and a healthy work/life balance. APL’s campus is located in the Baltimore-Washington metro area. Learn more about our career opportunities

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