In 2013 whistleblower Edward Snowden became arguably one of the world’s most wanted men. That year, after all, he gave journalists access to stacks of top-secret documents. And these papers seemingly exposed the shocking extent of surveillance tactics that U.S. intelligence agencies used – with the help of European governments and telecommunications firms, of course. However, Snowden later claimed that, while he had access to NSA and CIA databases, he’d also searched for the “truth” about some popular conspiracy theories – and mankind’s trip to the Moon was put under the spotlight.
To gain access to such sensitive information, though, Snowden had to be well connected. It helped, then, that in May 2013 he was working as a subcontractor and employee for the CIA. The future whistleblower had also spent more than a year working at the NSA’s regional operations center in Hawaii, which specialized in keeping tabs on North Korea and China. Snowden has described himself as an infrastructure analyst, and he claimed that he had searched for innovative methods to hack into phone and internet traffic worldwide.