The interesting part of this is the cover up on the arrest of the NSA Contractor who stole the document and leaked it instead of the content of the document.
The NSA has long denied and shut down any attempt by anyone to investigate if the election machines or databases were hacked by the Russians. Claiming that any such hacking would not have affected the end result, any effort to look at the obvious places which either statistically or algorithmically show the probable result of hacking.
When confronted with evidence that both the results in North Carolina and Florida showed signs of serious tampering – the door was slammed shut to any further analysis and access to the systems was shut down.
Meaning, those who had a good idea of how the system was compromised, and how – were to to sit down and STFU.
The purloined document shows that the NSA knew of an attempt at compromising over 100 local systems by the Russians all along.
So why is this being covered up?
And why did the “Contractor” leave such an obvious, well lit, trail? The coding of serial numbers on printed documents is extremely well known in the tech industry. As is the collection of “Print Logs”. And anyone with a high enough security clearance to pull this level of secured document down, knows damn well their every keystroke is monitored. Edward Snowden beat the system. There are ways to beat the system, which fall under the category, “If I knew how, I wouldn’t tell you.”.
Something isn’t right here.
Criminal investigations into national security leaks tend to be long, complicated and delicate affairs. Sources generally cover their tracks, especially in an era when even the most innocuous computer activity leaves an electronic trail. Leaks are common, but prosecutions aren’t.
Edward Snowden took extraordinary precautions when he leaked troves of classified information on surveillance activity by the National Security Agency to journalists and was charged only after he publicly revealed himself to be the source. Thomas Drake, a former NSA executive, wasn’t indicted for several years after he passed on details about fraud and waste at the agency to the Baltimore Sun. Originally accused of felony espionage, Drake pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor of exceeding authorized use of a computer.
In the case of Reality Leigh Winner, a government contractor accused of sending a top-secret document to a news outlet, federal authorities brought charges less than a week after being tipped off.
Winner, 25, was charged Monday with gathering, transmitting or losing defense information, as The Washington Post reported. Court documents did not identify the document that was leaked or the news outlet that received it, but the criminal complaint against Winner was unveiled shortly after the national security site the Intercept published a story containing an NSA report on Russian efforts to interfere with the 2016 election.
The Post has reported that the charges are related to the Intercept’s story, which describes how Russian military intelligence used hacking techniques against a U.S. voting software supplier and more than 100 local election officials in the days before voters went to the polls. The Intercept called the classified document the “most detailed U.S. government account of Russian interference in the election that has yet come to light,” saying it indicated that Russian hacking may have gone deeper than previously known.
A search warrant affidavit filed and accessible to the public in federal court in Georgia reveals how it took just a few days for investigators to single out Winner as the alleged source of the leak.
It started on May 30, when the news outlet showed authorities the printed materials and asked them to comment, according to the affidavit.
“The U.S. Government Agency examined the document shared by the News Outlet and determined the pages of the intelligence reporting appeared to be folded and/or creased,” the affidavit reads, “suggesting they had been printed and hand-carried out of a secured space.”
An internal audit showed that six people had printed out the top-secret materials after they were published at the beginning of the month. One of them was Winner, who worked for Pluribus International at a facility in Georgia, the affidavit says.