Shadow Broker? NSA Contractor Arrested for Allegedly Stealing Classified Code

The FBI in August secretly arrested a National Security Agency (NSA) contractor for allegedly stealing “highly classified computer codes,” the New York Times reported Wednesday, citing anonymous government sources.

The court complaint released Wednesday names the contractor as 51-year-old Harold Martin III, a Navy veteran living in Maryland. Like NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, Martin reportedly worked for the consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton. A statement from the Department of Justice (DOJ) states that Martin “had a top secret national security clearance.”

According to Politico, Martin

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The Times reported that Martin “is suspected of taking the highly classified ‘source code’ developed by the agency to break into computer systems of adversaries like Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea.”

The Verge writes:

Indeed, the Times reported that “[a]s investigators look into Mr. Martin’s case, it is almost certain that they will focus on whether” the contractor was behind the Shadow Brokers leak.

“That material…was thought by outside experts to have been obtained by hacking rather than from an insider,” the Times notes. “Now, in light of the arrest, that assumption may have to be revised. The code released by the Shadow Brokers was dated to 2013, meaning that it almost certainly has been overtaken by more recent code.”

Still, others expressed skepticism on social media that Martin was the Shadow Brokers’ source.