Former United States security contractor Edward Snowden could have stolen as many as 20,000 intelligence documents relating to Australian operations.
According to The Australian newspaper, US officials told Australian counterparts the former NSA staffer accessed between 15,000 and 20,000 related files though its unclear if he stole them all.
Snowden is now a fugitive who has claimed asylum in Russia.
The Australian says the reports are mostly from Australia’s electronic surveillance agency the ASD (which used to be called the DSD).
Snowden documents published by The Guardian and The ABC have shown the scope of Australian intelligence gathering, as well as causing a diplomatic headache.
Earlier media reports have said Australian officials are braced for further releases, with some speculating the worst is yet to come.
There is more here.
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