‘Snowden did use colleague’s login details’

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden did use the login credentials of at least one colleague to access classified documents. At least that’s what the NSA claims in an internal memo to the US Congress.

The internal memo, published by NBC News, shows that Snowden allegedly tricked an NSA employee into sharing his certificate with him. That certificate, which was needed to log in, was protected with a passphrase, but Snowden managed to save it, according to the internal memo. It’s unclear how he did that; he may have used a keylogger for that.

Thanks to his colleague’s login credentials, Snowden gained access to more documents than he had access to himself. The NSA colleague who shared his login information did not know that Snowden wanted the documents to be leaked, but has nevertheless lost his security clearance, the memo shows. That happened because he had shared his certificate, which is against the rules. He has since resigned.

In addition, a soldier with access to classified documents, as well as a freelancer, have also lost their permission to view classified information. That had to do with Snowden’s NSA revelations, but it’s unclear what they did to be punished. They may have helped Snowden, but the letter doesn’t show that.

Earlier, Reuters reported that Snowden obtained from twenty to twenty-five NSA colleagues login names and passwords, with which he looted classified documents. These were documents that he himself was not authorized to see. Later, however, business magazine Forbes reported that Snowden had not stolen any login details. It is unclear how it is; Snowden himself has not yet commented on it.