For years we’ve all have read articles proclaiming how James Bond would make a horrible spy in the real world. A man who stands out in a crowd would make an instant target to counter-intelligence agents and even peak the interest of local police. Suave and personable, James Bond was considered useless as an undercover agent to many critics of the franchise over the past five decades.
What these critics fail to realize is that there are different types of espionage personnel that international intelligence agencies use for all sorts of missions. In fact, there are forms of James Bond (and Jane Bond) throughout the intelligence community.
Yes, James Bond character starts off in every movie as a Hard Target (a person who maintains a low profile, or is hard to place on surveillance) but as it always happens in every adventure, he gets caught because of his high profile swagger. In reality most services would use Bond’s playboy antics to flush out and expose a Floating Box (a surveillance team that covers a target or group of targets from all angles) to allow a Hunting Pack (surveillance or counter surveillance team) to perform their duties mostly undetected.
James Bond like personalities are also used in Honeypot traps set to capture, kill or compromise an enemy agent using sex or friendship as a lure. Violence or blackmail may become necessary if an operative seemingly withholds time sensitive information.
In fact James Bond may be considered very valuable in counter intelligence conducting information warfare or becoming a Nightcrawler (a talent spotter who scouts for potential recruits in bars, clubs and high society functions) but rarely would you find Bond working in real life as an Illegal (an intelligence officer who works in a foreign country without an official cover, usually diplomatic or trade), Illegals are the elite among spies.