"Keep Sheriff Tommy J. Jones"

"Keep Sheriff Tommy J. Jones"

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Securing Information: Lessons learned from the Snowden leaks

NSA has released a detailed account of what classified data Edward Snowden was able to remove and just how he was able to pull off what is now considered to be one of the greatest leaks of classified information.

The documents that Snowden leaked, the Powerpoint slides and other classified documents were stored in the NSA's internal website so analysts with top-secret clearance could read them online.

This type of 'information sharing' was implemented after the 911 attacks—When Secret Information is shared, analysts are more likely to 'connect the dots'.

Because of Snowden's leaks, the way that information is shared in the NSA has seen several security upgrades. NSA Public Information Officer Lonnie Anderson will not disclose how Snowden was able to remove data from his work-station, since it is part of ongoing criminal investigation.

One of the post media leaks counter measures has been that sensitive information access is in two-person control areas. This will make it impossible for analysts with privileged access to work and move about anonymously on NSA computers.

The NSA will now be tagging data with 'identifiers' so that higher ups in the agency are able to decide which data system analysts are able to see, the information that systems analysts are able to see will have the handling of that information monitored and recorded. Other counter-measures that are now in use remain classified and will be continually upgraded and improved upon to secure NSA data.