Wired Magazine: The Most Wanted Man In The World

In this new piece from Wired, prominent journalist James Bamford details a lengthy interview with GAP client and NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden. The whistleblower discussed witnessing the NSA regularly pass communications to Israeli intelligence, and warns how an auto-cyberwarfare program named MonsterMind can counter foreign attacks by “firing back” with no human input – which could cause serious conflict if the programs are coming from unknowing third-party nations. Notably, Snowden reveals that in 2012, a division of the NSA was responsible for Syria’s countrywide Internet blackout. (Photo Credit: Wired Magazine)

Key QuoteBy the time he went to work for Booz Allen in the spring of 2013, Snowden was thoroughly disillusioned, yet he had not lost his capacity for shock. One day an intelligence officer told him that TAO—a division of NSA hackers—had attempted in 2012 to remotely install an exploit in one of the core routers at a major Internet service provider in Syria, which was in the midst of a prolonged civil war. This would have given the NSA access to email and other Internet traffic from much of the country. But something went wrong, and the router was bricked instead—rendered totally inoperable. The failure of this router caused Syria to suddenly lose all connection to the Internet—although the public didn’t know that the US government was responsible. (This is the first time the claim has been revealed.) 

Inside the TAO operations center, the panicked government hackers had what Snowden calls an [** ****] moment. They raced to remotely repair the router, desperate to cover their tracks and prevent the Syrians from discovering the sophisticated infiltration software used to access the network. But because the router was bricked, they were powerless to fix the problem.

Fortunately for the NSA, the Syrians were apparently more focused on restoring the nation’s Internet than on tracking down the cause of the outage. Back at TAO’s operations center, the tension was broken with a joke that contained more than a little truth: “If we get caught, we can always point the finger at Israel.”

The Hill: Lawmakers Demand Release of FBI Whistleblower Report

Longtime whistleblower champion Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), along with Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), sent a letter to President Obama on Tuesday requesting the release a report on the effectiveness of whistleblower protections for Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) employees. The report, delivered to Obama by Attorney General Eric Holder in June 2013, has yet to be released. The letter explains that based on the Department of Justice’s findings, legislation could be needed to address and update “a history of whistleblower retaliation” at the FBI.

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Huffington Post: Building a Community of Truth-Tellers to Answer Daunting ‘What’s for Dinner’ Question (VIDEO)

In this piece, GAP Food Integrity Campaign (FIC) Director Amanda Hitt discusses the overwhelming task of answering what should be a simple question: “What’s for dinner?”

She explains how whistleblowers can help consumers make more informed decisions, but that whistleblowers, in turn, need protection from routine retaliation that often keeps the truth from reaching the public. Hitt offers a community solution, highlighting FIC’s new campaign video and action-oriented website, where whistleblowers and citizen advocates can help each other build a culture that values truth-telling and make dinner decisions a little easier.

Forbes: Risky Business – How To Blow The Whistle (But Still Protect Your Career)

This opinion piece provides a road map for employees facing the dilemma of exposing wrongdoing within their organization. Citing Dr. David Gruder, an integrity expert, the piece provides six steps to assist individuals who are ready to become whistleblowers.

Sacramento Bee (CA): UC Davis ‘Whistleblower’ Wins $730,000 Verdict
An administrative nurse in California, who blew the whistle on unethical collection of medical records of prison inmates and was subsequently fired, has been awarded a $730,000 verdict.

Michael Riley is a Communications Intern for the Government Accountability Project, the nation’s leading whistleblower protection and advocacy organization.