Glenn Greenwald’s No Place to Hide for the lazy man.
4. Working as a contractor he was earning salaries of up to $200,000
Whistleblowing forced Snowden chose to leave a life of considerable comfort. Despite lacking formal qualifications he was earning a $200,000 salary, and even had to take a pay cut when he moved to Booz Allen Hamilton, accepting a measly $122,000 in part so that he could gain access to confidential files. From the outside Snowden would have appeared a huge success, though others have said he appeared to be wrestling with his conscience at times.
5. He delayed the leaks because of Barrack Obama’s election to president
"Obama’s campaign promises and election gave me faith that he would lead us toward fixing the problems he outlined in his quest for votes," Snowden said, answering questions on the Guardian’s website. Yet he was disappointed by the new president, who he accused of extending the surveillance state in America. He also criticised Obama for failing to close down Guantanamo, believing people to be held there without due process.
6. He uncovered a lot of spying
So many different schemes were revealed by the files that Snowden leaked that it’s been difficult to keep abreast of them all. Most famous among them has been the PRISM programme, used to tap into Google, Apple and Facebook servers to mine data. Perhaps more controversial than the spying on citizens was the tapping of allied leaders, which prompted an outcry among European politicians. Speaking about the powers at he had at his disposal, Snowden said: "I, sitting at my desk, certainly had the authorities to wiretap anyone, from you, or your accountant, to a federal judge, to even the President if I had a personal email."
7. He was presented with a Sam Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence
Four former US security personnel flew over to Russia to meet with Snowden, where he is currently claiming asylum. Jesselyn Radack, a former Justice Department adviser now with the Government Accountability Project said Snowden "spoke very openly about a whole range of things, a number of which I won’t get into here, but it certainly didn’t involve any kind of manipulation by the Russian government or anyone else for that matter". Snowden’s father said he didn’t expect his son to return to the United States, and stories from the leaked information continue to be broken by international press.