Snowden used sys admin role to collect passwords: Reuters

Reportedly convinced two dozen colleagues to give up their passwords


Reuters is reporting this morning that former NSA contractor Edward Snowden "persuaded" some two dozen colleagues at a Hawaii government facility to give him their login credentials by claiming it was necessary for him to do his job as systems administrator.

From that Reuters report:

A handful of agency employees who gave their login details to Snowden were identified, questioned and removed from their assignments, said a source close to several U.S. government investigations into the damage caused by the leaks.

Snowden may have persuaded between 20 and 25 fellow workers at the NSA regional operations center in Hawaii to give him their logins and passwords by telling them they were needed for him to do his job as a computer systems administrator, a second source said.

The revelation is the latest to indicate that inadequate security measures at the NSA played a significant role in the worst breach of classified data in the super-secret eavesdropping agency's 61-year history.

It's not clear whether "removed from their assignments" means fired or not, but, if true, his damaging the careers of coworkers will add another dimension to the debate about whether Snowden is a whistleblower or a traitor.

What is clear has long been understood, though: There is no greater security threat than a "trusted" insider with access.

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