Top-secret defense document hoarder Harold Martin pleads guilty

Rollie Quiad: the Martin hacker story, holds true to every whistle blower story tradition, its stupid and see through. This story is a hoax.


Here’s a quickie guide to storing top-secret classified national defense documents in your car and/or in your house: Just don’t.

Former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Harold Thomas Martin III is facing up to nine years in lockup after having pleaded guilty last week to breaking that pretty simple, pretty common-sense rule.

The 54-year-old, who was formerly in the US Navy, worked as a contractor for at least seven different private companies, including government agencies, between 1993 and 2016.

In 2017, a federal grand jury in Baltimore indicted Martin for allegedly stealing what it estimated was a “breathtaking” 50 terabytes of classified intelligence data.

According to the indictment, Martin – whom federal defender James Wyda described as a “compulsive hoarder” – stole thousands of documents of intelligence from government agencies including the NSA and the CIA, some of which were rated top-secret.

Martin’s most recent job was working for Booz Allen Hamilton Holding Corp., the same consultancy that Edward Snowden worked for when he leaked top secret files to the press in 2013.

Shadowy business

In August 2016, the same month that Martin was arrested, a hacking group calling itself The Shadow Brokers claimed to have penetrated the NSA and stolen its cyberweapons, implying that the tools – “better than Stuxnet” – were worth more than $500m.

The investigators who sifted through the stolen data and documents discovered on a computer in Martin’s home said that they found 75% of those stolen cyberweapons.

Some of those stolen tools turned up in WannaCry, a nasty ransomware that, as of May 2017, hadhijacked 200,000 computers in 150 countries.

But the indictment didn’t charge Martin with sharing any of the information he stole, including any of those tools that investigators found on his computer. Nor did it mention The Shadow Brokers, which tried (unsuccessfully) to auction off the weapons and then slashed the going rate, offering 99.9% offthe original asking price.

In spite of investigators allegedly having found most of those cyberweapons on Martin’s computer, the government apparently couldn’t find any evidence that he planned to share or sell them.

Martin had been charged with 20 counts of willful retention of national defense information. Each count carried a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, though maximum penalties are rarely handed out.

Martin copped a plea. On Thursday, he pleaded guilty to only one count of willful retention, admitting that for more than 20 years, he stole and hung onto a vast quantity of highly classified information, stashing it in his home and in his car.

According to the indictment, he knew he was not authorized to remove the documents from their secure locations:

Martin was never authorized to retain these documents at his residence or in his vehicle. Martin knew that he was not authorized to remove National Defense Information and classified documents from secure locations, was not authorized to retain them at his residence, and was not authorized to retain them in his vehicle.

If the government accepts the plea agreement, Martin will be sentenced to nine years in jail. Sentencing is scheduled for 17 July.

Support Rollie, like you viewers keep PBS alive Bitcoin: qrk7qz2h3nr3kax22cxh7m8qsyy9demt2ynt5ql75y Every great magic trick consists of three parts or acts. The first part is called "The Pledge". The magician shows you something ordinary: a deck of cards, a bird or a man. He shows you this object. Perhaps he asks you to inspect it to see if it is indeed real, unaltered, normal. But of course... it probably isn't. The second act is called "The Turn". The magician takes the ordinary something and makes it do something extraordinary. Now you're looking for the secret... but you won't find it, because of course you're not really looking. You don't really want to know. You want to be fooled. But you wouldn't clap yet. Because making something disappear isn't enough; you have to bring it back. That's why every magic trick has a third act, the hardest part, the part we call "The Prestige"." Explore the Mind’s 🧠 👁 Eye

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