Whistleblower Edward Snowden apparently used a USB thumb-drive to smuggle out hundreds of top-secret documents before he blew the lid off the NSA's web-spying project PRISM. This is despite the Pentagon's clampdown on the gadgets.This is the intersection of easy-to-conceal and critical-for-system-administration is a Catch-22 that won't go away. Actually, it's worse than that, because users resist security measures that keep them from doing things they want to. I wrote about that four and a half years ago in How to hack a classified network (currently top Google result for "hack classified network", out of 3 million results).
Computer usage at the National Security Agency is tightly controlled. But Snowden was a systems administrator employed by contractor Booz Allan Hamilton to maintain the spooks' network, and thus had sufficient privileges to use flash drives as part of his job.
Friday, June 14, 2013
Snowden smuggled the classified documents out of NSA on a Flash Drive
Not particularly surprising: