It would be impossible to think about James Bond who only speaks English - James Bond can parachute himself to a cocktail party in Rio de Janeiro and start conversing with the locals. We cannot all be James Bonds or work as spies, but when it comes to the field of security and defence, foreign languages are a definite advantage. Foreign languages bring value to national security, defence and diplomacy, conflict resolution and social cohesion.
Irish defence forces have a proud track record of UN peace keeping. If you are keeping the peace in a country where locals speak a language you have no idea about, a working knowledge of the local language gives you an obvious advantage. Combining foreign languages with a career in the defence forces can give you an opportunity to diversify your career. Linguists are needed to translate, to act as cryptologic linguists to identify foreign communications, and for community liaisons. Foreign languages are part and parcel of intelligence operations. Knowledge and experience of foreign languages and cultures makes the nation more skilled at cultural diplomacy and able to contribute to global security.
Domestic law enforcement in a country like Ireland brings the law enforcers into contact with people who come from different countries, speak different languages and operate in different cultures. Foreign language skills help to create liaisons with communities, particularly communities which may feel disenfranchised or uninformed. Liaison officers and officers who can not just speak to communities but who also understand their culture are valuable enforcers of our laws. An Garda Síochána encourage applications from members of all backgrounds and consider a second language a significent asset. As an organisation they must be able to represent and communicate with the growing multicultural community in Ireland.
The prison service may not sound like a place where foreign languages might be needed, but the Irish prison service is in dire need of more women and ethnic minorities to work as prison officers across the country. The prison population is completely different to what it was about 30 years ago, if you have some foreign languages and an awareness of cultural differences, you are bringing something more to the job.
The security sector includes careers from security guards to locksmiths to CCTV camera installers. While you can manage in English, there can be situations with clients, members of the public or co-workers where foreign languages are useful. Working for an international security company probably demands languages, or at least it is an asset. If you are based in locations such as an airport or a port, you need at least some foreign languages to be able to communicate with the people you come into contact with.
Cybersecurity is an area which concerns us all. IT security professionals might study computer engineering or programming, and then go on to develop security skills. In this global sector language skills will give you an advantage.