News / USA

Snowden Leaks Making US Security Efforts More Difficult

Brian Allen
National Intelligence Director James Clapper says terrorists have "gone to school" on U.S. surveillance efforts following Edward Snowden's information leaks.
Clapper told a U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee because of the former National Security Agency contractor's leaks terrorists have changed their communication methods, making the intelligence community's work more difficult.
During testimony Wednesday, Clapper called the leaks the “most massive and damaging theft of intelligence information” in American history, begging Snowden to return unreleased documents.
“Terrorists and other advisories of this country are going to school on U.S. intelligence sources, methods, and tradecraft, and the insights they are gaining are making our job much, much harder,” he said.
“Snowden claims he has won, and his mission is accomplished," Clapper added. "If that is so, I call on him and his accomplices to facilitate the return of the remaining stolen documents that have not yet been exposed to prevent even more damage to U.S. security.”
National Counterterrorism Director Matthew Olsen also told the committee there has been an “uptick” in terrorist threat reports before the Winter Olympics next week in Sochi, Russia.
“This is what we expected, given where the Olympics are located," he said. "There are a number of extremists in that area; in particular, a group, Imirat Kavkaz, which is probably the most prominent terrorist group in Russia.”
Olsen said the greatest threat is not to the athletes or spectators within the venues at the Olympic Games.
“There is extensive security at those locations, the sites of the events. The greater threat is to softer targets in the greater Sochi area and the outskirts, beyond Sochi, where there is a substantial potential for a terrorist attack," he said.
During the annual hearing on current and projected U.S. national security threats at home and abroad, Committee Chair Dianne Feinstein said Syria is a growing concern for terrorists.
"I think the most notable development since last year’s hearing is actually in Syria, which has become a magnet for foreign fighters and for terrorist activities," said Sen. Feinstein (D-Calif.). "The situation has become so dire that even al Qaida’s central leader, Ayman al Zawahiri, has renounced the activities of one group as being too extreme.”
The committee also expressed concern about Afghanistan, saying it cannot lose a “must-win” war in the country.

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Comments page of 2
by: JKF2 from: Great North (Canada)
February 01, 2014 2:27 PM
The inability for the US gvmt and US industry to keep critical information in a secure state will weaken all aspects of the US state; be it its economy, its global safety, its ability to effectively and efficiently deal with threats, and more and more other nations will be reluctant to share information. US taxpayers have contributed trillions of their hard earned money, to develop technologies and sustain the nation's industries at the forefront/frontiers of technologies, just to loose it all to its strategic competitors/adversaries, and essentially fall behind. Much the same situation is observed on the national security front; the terrorists/enemies are reaping an information bonanza. The global result of these significant exposures will be that the US taxpayer will need to triple, if not quadruple, resources to counter the loss of information. The cost will be so high that they will impact very negatively on the ability to provide required services- such as better universal education, better healthcare, maintenance/ improvements to infrastructure, etc.. And the unfortunate part is that those that advocate for more transparency, in a nation, are usually those that contribute the least to security/safety or the economy; rarely do they go to the frontlines of conflits, be it armed or economic, and in most cases they are unwiling to take a reasoned approach to the global damage they are causing to the US and its allies. In my opinion, case after case, over the last decade, the US taxpayer has lost billions, upon billions, from either outright info loses or from deliberate judicialy forced disclosures by extreme groups that do not see the damage their zelot demands generate; add to it info thefts and trillions are not out of the realm of estimates. Amazingly those with the heaviest taxload, are oblivious to the situation, too busy working/commuting 12-14 hr days to see how their economic errosion is taking place. Other Western countries face similar situations, but not as dramatic as the USA.

by: thepoetpete from: Chicago
February 01, 2014 12:09 PM
The American govt, via its controlled media, is brandishing every piece of its plans, its thoughts etc.... to whoever the so called terrorists people talk about. Be advised that the real threat to Americans is right here in our country. People don't want to hear that but hey its time to wake up.

by: JBSmith from: Newport News, VA
January 30, 2014 10:32 AM
Virginia’s suicide rate is higher than the national average and the military suicide rate is unacceptable! You can check your upper right buttock, upper right shoulder. They are just under the skin. I have been in excruciating pain for six years due to corruption in Virginia.

by: Godwin from: Nigeria
January 30, 2014 10:32 AM
It's USA making USA unsafe, no qualms. After all USA has been wanting something to limit it, why not also reduce security by listening to Edward Snowden. Otherwise there is nothing particular about listening in to what somebody is saying in a country that prides itself with openness. Now the people want restriction, secrecy, but in the things that should not be restricted; restriction is asked for things that should be open while the things that should be open are now restricted. Reminds me of one satirical music in Nigeria that talks about someone who baths with hot water in summer and baths with cold water in winter. That could be talking about USA. Is American society developing in anti-clockwise cycle?

by: anonymous
January 29, 2014 9:53 PM
yeah the terrorists are only getting their intel from snowden attacks have nothing to do with fact that we broadcast our every move that coulnt be one of the reasons they know what were doing could

by: Kevin from: FLORIDA
January 29, 2014 8:19 PM
snowden need to be tared and feathered for what he done I may not agree with all our government do but you still do not become a traitor. if our
government can listen to cell phone calls why can't they go get him? and put him where he belongs?

by: Paulgruenwald from: Earth
January 29, 2014 6:53 PM
Snowden brings to light what we already knew, just not to thee extent. It forces everyone to step it up a notch. Giving back what he's not revealed, bad idea. The lazy asses at he top will just go back to same o'l same o'l.

by: Thomas Hood from: USA
January 29, 2014 5:30 PM
This article should be titled "Snowden Leaks Making US Spy Efforts More Difficult" but that wouldn't be politically correct.

by: JR from: USA
January 29, 2014 5:14 PM
Isn't James Clapper the man that lied through his teeth to congress and said the NSA does not collect info on Americans?

by: Kurtis Engle from: Earth
January 29, 2014 4:49 PM
I'd like to mention for the benefit of the NID, that terrorists do not concern me. Terrorists have no influence I do not myself offer up. What concerns me is people who pretend to protect me from terrorists, whether I like it or not. And casually proceed to violate any law that gets in the way.

In light of history, the discussion is over. It is not any longer a matter of asking you to obey. We will now proceed to alter the infrastructure so you cannot use it against us. When everything is open source and scrambled, we will be safe.
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