American computer security expert and whistleblower Edward Snowden has a net worth of $500,000. Former government computer intelligence consultant Edward Snowden is famous for revealing the NSA’s mass global surveillance programs in a 2013 leak of classified information.
He was wanted by the US Department of Justice, so he fled there and eventually settled permanently in Russia. Snowden has taken his activism to a new level by becoming president of the Freedom of the Press Foundation, an organization that seeks to safeguard the press from cyberattacks and government surveillance.
Early Life and Education
Edward Snowden’s parents, Lonnie, a U.S. Coast Guard officer, and Elizabeth, a clerk in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, welcomed their first child on June 21, 1983, in Elizabeth City, North Carolina. His older sister’s name is Jessica, and she, too, has a government job. Snowden moved to Fort Meade, Maryland, with his family when he was a young boy.
He dropped out of school for nearly nine months due to mono, but eventually he recovered enough to take the GED exam and enroll at Anne Arundel Community College. He started a master’s degree program at the University of Liverpool online despite not having completed his bachelor’s degree.
Snowden joined the U.S. Army in 2004 and trained to become a member of the elite Special Forces unit in an effort to aid the oppressed people of Iraq. Unfortunately, an injury prevented him from completing training, and he was eventually discharged. After that, Snowden took a job as a guard at the National Security Agency-funded Center for Advanced Study of Language at the University of Maryland.
Snowden accepted a position at the CIA after attending a job fair in 2006 aimed at intelligence agencies. During his time there, he gained a reputation as a computer whiz, which ultimately led to his transfer to the agency’s top-secret training facility for tech experts.
Snowden was assigned to Geneva, Switzerland in 2007 to ensure the safety of computer networks. He was the nation’s foremost expert on cyber security, so the president took him with him to the 2008 NATO summit. Snowden left the CIA in early 2009, however.
Speaking Fee Earnings
In interviews, Snowden has said that his annual salary reached $200,000. This was before he went into exile. The private sector provided that. His highest annual salary in a government position was $122,000. An associate of Snowden’s claims that the sum he earns from speaking engagements is around $200,000.
Edward’s autobiography, titled “Permanent Record,” came out in the month of November 2019.
After leaving the CIA, Snowden took a job as a contractor for the multinational technology firm Dell. The National Security Agency stationed him at Yokota Air Base in Japan, where he gave briefings to civilian and military leaders on how to protect their computer systems from infiltration by Chinese hackers.
After four years at Dell, Snowden became a cyber-counterintelligence expert after having worked as an NSA computer-systems supervisor. When he found out that DNI James Clapper had lied to Congress under oath, he resigned in March 2013.
Snowden worked for Booz Allen Hamilton after leaving Dell; he was fired in June 2013 for trying to gather and release information about the NSA‘s global surveillance programs. Snowden, while employed by the NSA, became aware of the organization’s numerous violations of ethical standards, most notably it is egregious invasions of personal privacy.
Exposure of Secret Data
In 2013, Snowden decided to become a whistleblower after being unable to remain silent about the NSA’s unethical behavior. He has since released thousands of documents. Within a matter of months, the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Guardian, Der Spiegel, and Le Monde were just some of the international media outlets to publish these documents.
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Public knowledge of the NSA’s mass-surveillance apparatus was greatly expanded due to the efforts of Snowden and numerous journalists. The scope of the agency’s spying activities, including the tracking of cell phones and the harvesting of email and other telecommunications data, was revealed in the leaked documents.
They also revealed that the United States had spied on many countries, including some of its closest allies like Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Brazil, and Mexico.
United States federal prosecutors soon after the leak of the NSA documents charged Snowden with one count of theft of government property and two counts of violating the Espionage Act of 1917.
Refugee Protection Abroad
Having resigned from his position in 2013, Snowden eventually made his way to Hong Kong, where he planned to remain for as long as the government there would permit. After his time at the Mira Hotel, he was housed in several apartments with other asylum-seekers. After the United States revoked Snowden‘s passport, he sought refuge in Russia, where he was granted asylum for one year.
After this time, he was granted a temporary residency permit that would allow him to stay in the country for three years and travel abroad for up to three months at a time. In 2020, Snowden was granted a permanent residence permit after new Russian amendments made it possible.
Appears in The Media
Snowden has made hundreds of thousands of dollars from digital speaking engagements despite his fugitive status and numerous media appearances since releasing the NSA documents. At the South by Southwest interactive technology conference in Austin, Texas in 2014, he delivered a teleconference call presentation.
Not long after, he gave a TED talk in Vancouver via teleconference. Snowden has appeared on “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver,” as well as spoken at the LibrePlanet conference and MIT’s Media Lab’s Forbidden Research event. He is best known for his role in Laura Poitras’s Oscar-winning documentary “Citizenfour,” released in 2014.
Snowden secretly wed blogger and acrobat Lindsay Mills in 2017, after she had joined him in exile in Russia in 2014. Before the NSA surveillance revelations of 2013, the couple had already begun dating in 2009. During the month of December in the year 2020, Snowden and Mills welcomed a son into the world.
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