Date of Birth: June 21, 1983, North Carolina, USA
Edward Snowden is a 31 year old US citizen, former Intelligence Community officer and whistle-blower. The documents he revealed provided a vital public window into the NSA and its international intelligence partners’ secret mass surveillance programs and capabilities. These revelations generated unprecedented attention around the world on privacy intrusions and digital security, leading to a global debate on the issue.
Edward Snowden worked in various roles within the US Intelligence Community, including serving undercover for the CIA overseas. He most recently worked as an infrastructure analyst at the NSA, through a Booz Allen Hamilton contract, when he left his home and family in Hawaii to blow the whistle in May 2013. After travelling to Hong Kong, Snowden revealed documents to the American public on the NSA’s mass surveillance programs, which were shown to be operating without any public oversight and outside the limits of the US Constitution. The US government has charged Snowden with theft of government property, and two further charges under the 1917 Espionage Act. Each charge carries a maximum 10-year prison sentence.
With the US pursuing his extradition, Edward Snowden is now in Russia, where he was formally granted three years’ residency from 1 August 2014, after a year of temporary asylum in Russia ended on 31st July 2014. Journalists continue to publish documents from Snowden that reveal the secret and unaccountable systems of modern global surveillance.
Edward Snowden Quotes
“The only way I can end this book is the way I began it: with a dedication to Lindsay, whose love makes life out of exile.” /Edward Snowden
“That's the beauty of the Internet is that we're no longer tied to our communities by physical connections.” /Edward Snowden
“But even if you didn’t search for anything online, it wouldn’t take much for an interested government to find out that you’ve been reading this book. At the very least, it wouldn’t take much to find out that you have it, whether you downloaded it illegally or bought a hard copy online or purchased it at a brick-and-mortar store with a credit card.” /Edward Snowden
“America must have a greater commitment to justice than it does simply to the law.” /Edward Snowden
“Instead, I was resolved to bring to light a single, all-encompassing fact: that my government had developed and deployed a global system of mass surveillance without the knowledge or consent of its citizenry.” /Edward Snowden
“Put simply, a world in which every law is always enforced would be a world in which everyone was a criminal.” /Edward Snowden
“Ultimately, saying that you don’t care about privacy because you have nothing to hide is no different from saying you don’t care about freedom of speech because you have nothing to say.” /Edward Snowden
“It’s one of the great chastening facts of working with systems that the part of a system that malfunctions is almost never the part in which you notice the malfunction.” /Edward Snowden
“I don't want to live in a world where everything that I say, everything I do, everyone I talk to, every expression of creativity or love or friendship is recorded.” /Edward Snowden
“America’s Founders were skilled engineers of political power, particularly attuned to the perils posed by legal subterfuge and the temptations of the presidency toward exercising monarchical authority.” /Edward Snowden
“To hack a system requires getting to know its rules better than the people who created it or are running it, and exploiting all the vulnerable distance between how those people had intended the system to work and how it actually works, or could be made to work. In capitalizing on these unintentional uses, hackers aren’t breaking the rules as much as debunking them.” /Edward Snowden
“Under observation, we act less free, which means we effectively are less free.” /Edward Snowden