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Former NSA agent jailed for five years for leaking Russian US election hacking intel

Former NSA agent jailed for five years for leaking Russian US election hacking intel

A FORMER NSA agent who was accused of leaking top secret information to a media outlet has been sent down for more than five years.

The agenty goes by the rather strange name of Reality Winner. Whether that’s a real name or not, who knows. But this is America we’re talking about.

She originally faced up to 10 years in prison for leaking an NSA report on alleged interference by the Russians in the 2016 US election. However, the sentence was reduced to 63 months under a plea deal.

Still, this is said to be the longest sentence given for passing confidential material to a media outlet.

The leaked doc alleged that Moscow’s military intelligence services had attempted cyberattacks on at least one US voting software supplier days before the 2016 US presidential election.

However, the doc didn’t prove the hackers had been successful in their attempts.

Winner, who is obviously only a winner by name, was arrested last year while she was working as a  linguist at an NSA facility in Georgia.

She was caught after investigators noticed that the leaked document had been folded or creased, indicating that it had been “printed and then carried out of a secured space”, according to an FBI testimony document in support of the arrest warrant.

She was then detained and charged under the Espionage Act while investigators examined her email on her desk computer, which revealed that she had exchanged emails with the news outlet, The Intercept.

“I misused my clearance to print out the report,” Winner told a hearing in June, according to Fox News. “I did so of my own free will.”

Earlier this year, Reddit became the latest platform to admit that its users were unwitting pawns in Russian election propaganda.

A blog post from its CEO Steve Huffman admitted that its users, mostly from the US, were spreading ‘fake news’ and other propaganda on the site.

It also confirmed that although little or no advertising content from Russia has been found, it has all now been blocked for removal of doubt. µ

Further reading

Source : Inquirer

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