Recently I blogged about the recent revival of the NSA's TIA program (Total Information Awareness) and about how when it was running last time, a case of office politics became a national security boondoggle.
Thomas Drake was the inventor of Thinthread, which was a data-mining program that preserved the anonymity of Americans unless something pertinent to national security was found. His program was scrapped in favor of something much more unwieldy that never worked, so then the NSA went back to Thinthread, but stripped it of its anonymity protection. The resulting program was being used to wiretap Americans without a warrant. Drake and his two bosses at the NSA whistleblew to Congress. Eventually they were busted and Drake was accused of violating the Espionage Act by retaining five classified (they say) documents at home mixed in with boxes and boxes of papers in his basement that were related to the Congressional whistleblowing.
Anyway, the Feds dropped most of the charges and Drake was sentenced. He will be serving one year of probation. I think he ought to have been given the Congressional Medal of Honor instead.
Here's the story
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