Quick look: The NSA security quagmire

Big mess: FBI now looking at Edward Snowden's disclosures about the National Security Agency's broad monitoring of phone call and Internet data from big companies such as Google and Facebook.

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Since the messy and precarious news broke recently that details from a classified National Security Agency terrorist surveillance program had been leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, the security firestorm that has ensued has only gotten worse by the day. Here we take a look at the details of the growing morass.

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Credit: REUTERS/Chor Sokunthea

FBI Director Robert Mueller said this week that authorities would move aggressively to track down Snowden and hold him accountable for leaking the details of extensive and top-secret U.S. surveillance efforts. Mueller confirmed that a criminal investigation had been launched into the leaks and said public reports about the National Security Agency's efforts to monitor Internet and phone data had hurt  U.S. national security.

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Credit: REUTERS/Bobby Yip

Passengers watch a television screen broadcasting news on Edward Snowden, a contractor at the National Security Agency, on a train in Hong Kong June 14, 2013

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Credit: REUTERS/Bobby Yip

Pro-democracy lawmaker Gary Fan (L) holds a combination photo featuring U.S. President Barack Obama and Edward Snowden, a contractor at the National Security Agency (NSA), as lawmaker Claudia Mo holds a letter to Obama, during a news conference in Hong Kong in support of Snowden.

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Credit: REUTERS/Bobby Yip

Protesters supporting Edward Snowden, a contractor at the National Security Agency (NSA), hold a photo of Snowden during a demonstration outside the U.S. Consulate in Hong Kong June 13. China's Foreign Ministry offered no details on Thursday on Snowden, the National Security Agency contractor who revealed the U.S. government's top-secret monitoring of phone and Internet data and who is in hiding in Hong Kong as of this writing.

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Credit: REUTERS/Jason Lee

A picture of Edward Snowden, a contractor at the National Security Agency (NSA), is seen on a computer screen displaying a page of a Chinese news website, in Beijing. China's Foreign Ministry offered no details on Thursday (13th) on Snowden, the NSA contractor who revealed the U.S. government's top-secret monitoring of phone and Internet data and who is in hiding in Hong Kong. The Chinese characters of the title read: "PRISM program whistleblower Snowden being interviewed in Hong Kong".

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Credit: REUTERS/Bobby Yip

A woman walks past the Central Computer Room of the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Snowden said in an interview that the NSA had been hacking computers in Hong Kong and mainland China since 2009, with targets including public officials, businesses and students in the city as well as the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

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Credit: REUTERS/Pawel Kopczynski

An illustration picture shows the logo of the U.S. National Security Agency on the display of an iPhone in Berlin, June 7. The debate over whether the U.S. government is violating citizens' privacy rights while trying to protect them from terrorism escalated dramatically on Thursday amid reports that authorities have collected data on millions of phone users and tapped into servers at nine Internet companies.

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Credit: REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) holds smartphones during a news conference to announce legal action against government surveillance and the National Security Agency's overreach of power on Capitol Hill in Washington.

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Credit: REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

General Keith Alexander, commander of the U.S. Cyber Command, director of the National Security Agency (NSA) and chief of the Central Security Service (CSS), arrives at the Senate Appropriations Committee hearing on Cybersecurity: Preparing for and Responding to the Enduring Threat, on Capitol Hill in Washington June 12. "Great harm has already been done by opening this up, and the consequence, I believe, is [that] our security is jeopardized," Alexander said.

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Credit: REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

General Keith Alexander (L), commander of the U.S. Cyber Command, director of the National Security Agency (NSA) and chief of the Central Security Service (CSS), and Rand Beers, acting deputy secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, testify before the Senate Appropriations Committee hearing on Cybersecurity: Preparing for and Responding to the Enduring Threat, on Capitol Hill in Washington.

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Credit: REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

The Booz Allen Hamilton Holding Corp office building is seen in McLean, Va., June 11. Contracting firm Booz Allen Hamilton Holding Corp said on Tuesday it has fired Edward Snowden, who admitted to releasing information on the U.S. government's broad monitoring of American's phone and Internet data, for violating the firm's ethics and policies.

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Credit: REUTERS/Mark Makela

A sign reading "No Reporters Please" is posted on the front door of the house belonging to Lonnie and Karen Snowden, father and stepmother of NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden, in Upper Macungie Township, Pa., June 11. Edward Snowden has become known worldwide as the man responsible for exposing vast surveillance programs by the National Security Agency, one of the most secretive government agencies in the United States.

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Credit: REUTERS/Mark Makela

The house belonging to Lonnie and Karen Snowden, father and stepmother of NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden, is seen in Upper Macungie Township, Pennsylvania June 11. Edward Snowden has become known worldwide as the man responsible for exposing vast surveillance programs by the National Security Agency, one of the most secretive government agencies in the United States.

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Credit: REUTERS/Jimmy Urquhart

New National Security Agency (NSA) data gathering facility rises in Bluffdale, about 25 miles (40 kms) south of Salt Lake City, Utah. The Obama administration has launched an internal review to assess damage to U.S. national security from last week's leak of top-secret details of National Security Agency surveillance programs, a senior U.S. intelligence official said.

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Credit: REUTERS/Bobby Yip

Ewen MacAskill, one of the journalists for The Guardian who met former CIA employee Edward Snowden, ponders over a question during an interview in Hong Kong. Edward Snowden's decision to flee to Hong Kong as he prepared to expose the U.S. government's secret surveillance programs may not save him from prosecution due to an extradition treaty in force since 1998.

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Credit: REUTERS/Bobby Yip

Visitors walk into The Mira Hotel, where 29-year-old former CIA employee Edward Snowden was reported to have checked out of on Monday, in Hong Kong June 10. Edward Snowden's decision to flee to Hong Kong as he prepared to expose the U.S. government's secret surveillance programs may not save him from prosecution due to an extradition treaty in force since 1998. An employee working at The Mira Hotel said someone with the same name as Snowden checked out of the hotel on June 10, CNN reported.