CIA, NSA Contractor Admits To Leaking Secret Programs

2:03 PM, Jun 9, 2013   |    comments
  • A sign stands outside the National Security Administration campus on Thursday in Fort Meade, Md. (Photo: Patrick Semansky, AP)
    
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(USA Today) -- A 29-year-old man who has worked for a series of U.S. intelligence contractors acknowledged Sunday that he leaked key documents to The Guardian, the paper reported.

Edward Snowden is a former technical assistant for the CIA, The Guardian reported, and has spent the last four years working for a series of contractors for the National Security Agency, including Booz Allen Hamilton and Dell.

He left his job at the NSA's Hawaii office three weeks ago, taking with him the documents that he then leaked to the Guardian and the Washington Post. He's now holed up in a hotel room in Hong Kong, he said.

"The Guardian, after several days of interviews, is revealing his identity at his request," the paper wrote. "From the moment he decided to disclose numerous top-secret documents to the public, he was determined not to opt for the protection of anonymity. 'I have no intention of hiding who I am because I know I have done nothing wrong,' he said.

In a video accompanying the Guardian story, Snowden said the NSA "targets the communications of everyone" -- including American citizens -- and routinely gathers vast amounts of data on everyday communications.

"So while they may be intending to target someone associated with a foreign government, or someone that they suspect of terrorism, they're collecting your communications to do so," he said.

"Any analyst at any time can target anyone," he said. "I, sitting at my desk, certainly had the authority to wiretap anyone from you or your accountant to a federal judge to even the president if I had a personal e-mail."