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06 June 2017, 05:33 | Mandy Simon
Winner's affidavit, however, notes that an unidentified USA government agency-presumably the National Security Agency-was contacted by the news outlet on May 30 about an upcoming report, precluding any breaking news articles involving classified material prior to that date.
The Intercept did not say how it came to possess the leaked NSA report. "The Intercept has no knowledge of the identity of the source".
The picture showed the document had a particular fold in the paper, which officials concluded were able to trace back to a specific printed version of the document.
In one, the Russian hackers posed as another voting company, referred to as United States company 2, from which they sent phony test emails - offering "election-related products and services".
Sources confirmed to NBC News that victor was the person behind the leak of the document.
In a statement, Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein praised "exceptional law enforcement efforts" for quickly identifying victor. The Intercept pointed out that while the company wasn't directly named, the NSA's report referenced the company VR Systems several times. Reality Leigh Winner, 25, who reportedly worked at an NSA facility in Georgia, was arrested over the weekend. "Releasing classified material without authorization threatens our nation's security and undermines public faith in government".
On June 3, victor was questioned by the Federal Bureau of Investigation at her home in Augusta, Georgia, in which she allegedly admitted "intentionally identifying and printing the classified intelligence reporting at issue, " according to the affidavit, which said she also allegedly admitted "removing the classified intelligence reporting from her office space, retaining it, and mailing it from Augusta, Georgia, to the news outlet, which she knew was not authorised to receive or possess the documents". "People who are trusted with classified information and pledge to protect it must be held accountable when they violate that obligation." .
The NSA report does not say if Russia's hacking actually affected the 2016 USA presidential election, but the agency does say that the hackers were part of a team with a "cyber espionage mandate specifically directed at US and foreign elections".
The Intercept said that the agency, Washington's most important signals intelligence body, sought first to dissuade them from publishing it, and then requested redactions.
Winner's attorney, Titus Nichols, said she has no criminal history and is "a very good person". Former DNI James Clapper, who left his post before President Trump's inauguration, has repeatedly said that there was no evidence that Russian Federation changed any vote tallies in the US election. According to Justice's press release, victor admitted to knowingly printing classified information and sending it to the media.
Asked if victor had confessed, Nichols said, "If there is a confession, the government has not shown it to me".
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