How to leak news safely in the age of total digital surveillance


1 Like

It’s even safer to keep your head down and your mouth shut, and the DoJ has made sure we know it.

1 Like

Counterpoint worth reading:

let’s say I were with some other intelligence agency, either one allied with our forces or one hostile to it. I might notice that The Intercept is trafficking in really neato stolen goods. They’re soliciting more. And what’s more, they’re advertising what could be a really great, so to speak, phishing hole—that is, a mechanism to send them files and maybe get them onto their computers. If I were a foreign intelligence agency, I’d be looking at this as a great way to send enticing-looking documents, maybe even real ones, that contain some nifty bits of executable code that offered visibility for me onto the activities of people with access to the Snowden materials, people who are talking to and recruiting other leakers. Or maybe I’d be drop some honey-pot files, some files that beacon their location. Or maybe I’d just use the opportunity to drop disinformation on journalists who have shown they will believe just about anything if it’s disparaging of U.S. intelligence.


The Intercept folks make a big deal of their facility with encryption, but the truth is that they’re amateurs. And they are amateurs in a world of professionals. There is nothing they can build that a professional intelligence service can’t break. I don’t believe there is a SecureDrop they can construct which is secure against someone who has penetrated the computers with which they access it. And without knowing exactly how their system purports to avoid this problem, there is no good reason for a leaker to have confidence that The Intercept‘s systems have not already been penetrated. This may not expose the leaker, given the way Tor and the drop system work—though it may. But it does mean that the leaker has no reason to have confidence, when he uses these systems to talk to Glenn Greenwald or Laura Poitras, that he’s talking only to Greenwald and Poitras.

1 Like

This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.