Britain pulls spies as Moscow cracks Snowden files--reports | Inquirer News
Close  

Britain pulls spies as Moscow cracks Snowden files–reports

/ 10:43 AM June 14, 2015
Map of the world showing the status of Edward Snowden's asylum requests

Map of the world showing the status of Edward Snowden’s asylum requests.

LONDON, United Kingdom – Britain has been forced to remove some of its spies after Russia and China accessed the top-secret raft of documents taken by former US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, British media reported.

The BBC and the Sunday Times cited senior government and intelligence officials as saying agents had been pulled, with the newspaper saying the move came after Russia was able to decrypt more than one million files.

ADVERTISEMENT

“It is the case that Russians and Chinese have information. It has meant agents have had to be moved and that knowledge of how we operate has stopped us getting vital information,” a Downing Street source said, according to the newspaper.

The BBC said on its website, meanwhile, that a government source said the two countries “have information” that spurred intelligence agents being moved, but said there was “no evidence” any spies were harmed.

FEATURED STORIES

Russian sanctuary

Snowden fled to Russia after leaking the documents to the press in 2013 to expose the extent of US online surveillance programs and to protect “privacy and basic liberties”.

The Sunday Times said other government sources claimed China had also accessed the documents, which reveal US and British intelligence techniques, leading to fears that their spies could be identified.

Snowden worked as a contractor at the CIA and National Security Agency, where he was able to download 1.7 million secret documents that showed how hundreds of millions of people had been surveilled by the authorities.

He previously claimed that “no intelligence service” could crack the documents, saying he was able to “keep such information from being compromised even in the highest threat counter-intelligence environments”.

But an intelligence source told the Sunday Times: “We know Russia and China have access to Snowden’s material and will be going through it for years to come, searching for clues to identify potential targets.”

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Britain, Edward Snowden, espionage, Moscow, spies, United Kingdom
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.


© Copyright 1997-2021 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.