News / USA

    NSA Leaks Could Be Significant

    Experts Say NSA Leak Damage Could be Significanti
    X
    June 12, 2013 5:26 PM
    Security experts say it will be some time before U.S. officials have an idea of the damage done by revelations about surveillance programs carried out by the National Security Agency. The programs in question involved widespread access to phone records and mining the Internet for communications from suspected foreign terrorists. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Experts Say NSA Leak Damage Could be Significant
    Security experts say it will be some time before U.S. officials have an idea of the damage done by revelations about surveillance programs carried out by the National Security Agency.  The programs in question involved widespread access to phone records and mining the Internet for communications from suspected foreign terrorists.  

    NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden giving an interview about why he leaked intelligence information.NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden giving an interview about why he leaked intelligence information.
    x
    NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden giving an interview about why he leaked intelligence information.
    NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden giving an interview about why he leaked intelligence information.
    The man who says he was behind the NSA leaks, contractor Edward Snowden, has inspired some and angered others, including U.S. House Speaker John Boehner on ABC News.

    “He is a traitor.  The disclosure of this information puts Americans at risk.  It shows our adversaries what our capabilities are and it is a giant violation of the law," said Boehner.

    Disclosures about the NSA programs that combed through phone records and scanned Internet communications linked to suspected foreign terrorists worries security experts like Steve Bucci of the Heritage Foundation.

    “We have now revealed to our enemies, terrorists that are out there, the way we try and monitor and anticipate their actions and that is going to be damaging to our anti-terrorism activities," said Bucci.

    Bucci predicts terrorists will alter their communication methods as a result of the disclosures.

    “I think the bad guys will start taking steps to dive deeper to cloak their communications and there are ways to do that on line.  And as they do that the result, potentially, is that we fail to anticipate an operation and Americans or friends of ours inevitably die because these bad gays managed to pull their operation off and we were not able to anticipate it sufficiently," he said.

    But many civil liberties activists have spoken out in defense of Snowden, including international security expert Jim Walsh from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

    “In the balance between national security and privacy, which of course there always is, the burden is on national security to show that this is important and necessary, and no one has done that," Walsh told Alhurra television.

    Snowden is also seen as a hero by perhaps the most famous leaker of all time, Daniel Ellsberg, the man who disclosed the Pentagon Papers about the Vietnam War in 1971.

    “As for being called a traitor that is part of the price of telling the truth that the president does not want told.  I paid that price myself," said Ellsberg.

    But conservative analyst Steve Bucci fears that a backlash against the NSA programs by those concerned about civil liberties could weaken national security.

    “The change in confidence or the drop in confidence of the American people in our government will cause us to try and reel back these systems.  So right when the bad guys are going deeper, we are going to use less scrutiny and the next thing we are going to have is some more terrorist events," he said.

    Experts say a full assessment of the damage caused by the leaks could take months.

    Jim Malone

    Jim Malone has served as VOA’s National correspondent covering U.S. elections and politics since 1995. Prior to that he was a VOA congressional correspondent and served as VOA’s East Africa Correspondent from 1986 to 1990. Jim began his VOA career with the English to Africa Service in 1983.

    You May Like

    Video Democrats Clinton, Kaine Offer 'Very Different Vision' Than Trump

    In a jab at Trump, Clinton says her team wants to 'build bridges, not walls'; Obama Hails Kaine's record; Trump calls Kaine a 'job-killer'

    Turkey Wants Pakistan to Close Down institutions, Businesses Linked to Gulen

    Thousands of Pakistani students are enrolled in Gulen's commercial network of around two dozen institutions operating in Pakistan for over two decades

    AU Passport A Work in Progress

    Who will get the passport and what the benefits are still need to be worked out

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: kharg
    June 14, 2013 1:10 AM
    This report is biased. It takes as a given that "damage was done" by Snowden; the only question is how much. But there is another point of view held by experts, which is that NO damage to national security was done. Your reporter needs to retake Journalism 101.

    by: Anonymous
    June 13, 2013 10:44 PM
    The Heritage Foundation is a conservative "think tank" funded by the Koch Brothers... and you're taking their quote seriously? Laughable.

    by: Anonymous
    June 13, 2013 4:10 AM
    the USA internet service provider has be damaged in cyber world about them trademark . can we trust USA of internet company service again?

    by: WOUFEN from: CHINA
    June 13, 2013 4:04 AM
    Snowden saids us govermnet invade china cyber for years ago

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movementi
    X
    July 22, 2016 11:49 AM
    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Poor Residents in Cleveland Not Feeling High Hopes of Republican Convention

    With the Republican Party's National Convention underway in Cleveland, Ohio, delegates and visitors are gathered in the host city's downtown - waiting to hear from the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. But a few kilometers from the convention's venue, Cleveland's poorest residents are not convinced Trump or his policies will make a difference in their lives. VOA's Ramon Taylor spoke with some of these residents as well as some of the Republican delegates and filed this report.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video With Yosemite as Backdrop, Obama Praises National Parks

    Last month, President Barack Obama and his family visited some of the most beautiful national parks in the U.S. Using the majestic backdrop of a towering waterfall in California's Yosemite National Park, Obama praised the national park system which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. He talked about the importance of America’s “national treasures” and the need to protect them from climate change and other threats. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Counter-Islamic State Coalition Plots Next Steps

    As momentum shifts against Islamic State in Iraq, discussions are taking place about the next steps for driving the terrorist group from its final strongholds. Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting a counter-IS meeting at the State Department, a day after defense ministers from more than 30 countries reviewed and agreed upon a course of action. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb reports.
    Video

    Video Russia's Participation at Brazil Olympic Games Still In Question

    The International Olympic Committee has delayed a decision on whether to ban all Russian teams from competing in next month's Olympic Games in Brazil over allegations of an elaborate doping scheme. The World Anti-Doping Agency recently released an independent report alleging widespread doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. So far, only Russian track and field athletes have been barred from the Summer Games in Brazil. VOA's Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.
    Video

    Video Millennials Could Determine Who Wins Race to White House

    With only four months to go until Americans elect a new president, one group of voters is getting a lot more attention these days: those ages 18 to 35, a generation known as millennials. It’s a demographic that some analysts say could have the power to decide the 2016 election. But a lot depends on whether they actually turn out to vote. VOA’s Alexa Lamanna reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora