Edward Snowden had a negative report placed in his CIA personnel file more than four years ago, but that "red flag" wasn't enough to keep him out of the NSA's highly classified computer network. According to a report in Friday's The New York Times, while working as a CIA technician back in 2009, Snowden was sent home from an overseas posting due to the suspicions of supervisor — who suspected him of trying to gain unauthorized access to classified files. Yet, that didn't stop Snowden from retaining his security clearance when he switched jobs and moved to the NSA.
At the beginning of 2013, Snowden was hired by Booz Allen Hamilton, a government contractor who put him to work for the National Security Agency. Had Booz Allen or the NSA seen Snowden's CIA file before hiring him, it almost certainly would have affected his employment, but his tarnished record appears to have "slipped through the cracks."
In 2006, Snowden was hired as computer technician by the CIA and sent to Geneva, Switzerland, with a State Department cover story. In interviews this summer, Snowden claimed his work in Geneva made him "disillusioned" with the government and its clandestine operations. By 2009, a supervisor noticed that Snowden's attitude and work habits had changed. He placed a "derogatory report" in Snowden's file, which included the suspicion that he had tried to access files without authorization. After the note was filed, Snowden was sent home.
That report was not automatically forwarded to the NSA when it came time to review his top-secret security clearance as a contractor. Law enforcement officials say that oversight in procedures has been corrected — but too late to undo the damage that Snowden has wreaked on the agency since divulging whole hard drives of information to the media. Snowden in still in Russia, living under temporary asylum.