Edward Snowden, the former CIA contractor who became famous for his infamous leaks of top-secret National Security Agency (NSA) documents is making the secretive Kremlin rethink about using old-fashioned devices to be safe.
The WikiLeaks scandal that grabbed world headlines in 2010 with its release of hundreds of thousands of US state department diplomatic cables, including secret files relating to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan was bad enough, but the latest Snowden caper is not only making the USA look bad in the eyes of the world community for its arcane surveillance practices, but also making other countries apprehensive and fearful of their own security services, whether or not it is effectively working for their own national interests.
In light of these developments, and to prevent further leaks from computer hardware, the Federal Protective Service (FSO), Russia’s agency responsible for the Kremlin security is said to have place a 486,540-rouble (£9,860 or $14,900) order for electric typewriters on the state procurement website.
“After scandals with the distribution of secret documents by WikiLeaks, the exposes by Edward Snowden, reports about Dmitry Medvedev being bugged during his visit to the G20 London summit (in 2009), it has been decided to expand the practice of creating paper documents,” the source said.
The source added that typewriters were already being used at Russia’s defense and emergencies ministries for drafts and secret notes, and some reports had been prepared for President Vladimir Putin by typewriter.