Russia, China decrypt codes of Snowden’s files
KONFRONTASI - Russian and Chinese specialists have successfully cracked the encryption of files stolen by US whistleblower Edward Snowden, a report says.
The secret files’ decryption has forced British intelligence agency MI6 and US intelligence services to recall a number of its agents from active operations, said a report by the Sunday Times.
“Agents have had to be moved and that knowledge of how we operate has stopped us getting vital information,” the report to be published on Sunday quoted an unnamed Downing Street source as saying.
“Russians and Chinese have information,” the source added.
Snowden, a former CIA contractor, left the US in 2013 after leaking classified intelligence documents, stored on encrypted files, revealing the extent of the US National Security Agency's (NSA) spying activities and was granted asylum by Russia in August 2013.
According to the report, British intelligence now believes Russia and China have hacked the files, gaining access to sensitive information within.
A British intelligence source is also quoted in the report as saying that “Snowden has done incalculable damage.”
“In some cases, the agencies have been forced to intervene and lift their agents from operations to prevent them from being identified and killed,” the source added.
He went on to say that Russian and Chinese authorities would be examining the leaked material for “years to come.”[ptv]