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posted by martyb on Friday October 21 2016, @12:49PM   Printer-friendly
from the information-wants-to-be-free? dept.

Federal prosecutors have charged former NSA contractor Harold T. Martin III under the Espionage Act:

Harold T. Martin III is expected to appear at a federal courthouse in Baltimore on Friday for a hearing to consider whether he should remain in U.S. custody, as prosecutors announced in a court filing that they plan to file Espionage Act charges against him.

The FBI is investigating whether Martin may have transferred six bankers boxes' worth of paper documents and 50,000 gigabytes of electronic materials to anyone else, according to documents filed Thursday. So far, investigators said they have not found any connection to a foreign power. Martin's public defenders, James Wyda and Deborah Boardman, have said that he presents no flight risk and that "there's no evidence he intended to betray his country."

Martin, a former Navy reservist, has been in federal custody since late August. That's when FBI agents executed search warrants at his suburban Maryland home, uncovering what they describe as "overwhelming" proof he mishandled classified information. Among the materials they found: the personal information of government employees and a top-secret document "regarding specific operational plans against a known enemy of the United States and its allies," according to the court filing.

The trove of information reportedly includes hacking tools that were recently offered for sale by a group that calls itself The Shadow Brokers.

12-page court filing: United States of America v. Harold T. Martin, III

NSA Contractor Harold Martin III Arrested
Probe of Leaked U.S. NSA Hacking Tools Examines Operative's ‘Mistake’

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 21 2016, @04:31PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 21 2016, @04:31PM (#417304)

    In general I agree with your statement that digital "theft" as described by RIAA/MPAA is not theft as such. However, classified information is a bit different by nature of what it entails.

    To make a purely hypothetical example, imagine there was a flaw with Windows 10 where if you plug in a USB stick with a special program on it, you could bypass security and grab everything in the Documents folder of all users. If this information gets out, everybody will fix the flaw which would deprive the NSA the ability to use this flaw.

    So in this case, the person has taken the (intellectual) property and has deprived the original owners of its usage... so it is actually literal theft.

  • (Score: 2) by mhajicek on Friday October 21 2016, @07:08PM

    by mhajicek (51) on Friday October 21 2016, @07:08PM (#417372)

    There is a USB stick commercially available for $20 that lets you completely pwn any windows box that isn't using full drive encryption. Linus Tech Tips reviewed it.

    The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek