National Security Administration (NSA)

NSA's rogue hacking tool sparks debate

Illustration of fingers pointing across the NSA logo
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Security experts are drawing differing lessons from the latest report of the alleged use of secret NSA hacking tools by a criminal group. Some argue the NSA needs more oversight, while others say that organizations need to be more vigilant about updating the systems the NSA tools target.

The big picture: These two remedies aren't mutually exclusive. But neither is easy to achieve. 

Intelligence analyst charged for leaking to Intercept reporter

This image is a close-up of the Department of Justice seal.
Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

Former intelligence analyst Daniel Everette Hale was indicted for allegedly providing classified documents related to drone warfare to a reporter in 2014 while working at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA). Descriptions of that reporter match Jeremy Scahill, a founding editor of the Intercept, the Washington Post reports.

Why it matters: This is at least the third time an Intercept source has been arrested for leaking classified documents. NSA contractor Reality Winner leaked a classified NSA document on Russian meddling in the U.S. election to The Intercept in 2017, while ex-FBI agent Terry Albury was arrested in 2018 for leaking documents about the bureau's informant recruiting.. These arrests underscore the risk posed to sources involved in national security stories.