“The Snowden Files is a vital account of the story of the decade and the issue of our age”
The Irish Times
Chairperson: Chris Donoghue
Edward Snowden must have seemed a safe bet. An unassuming 29-year-old computer whizz, a committed Republican, gun lover and a passionate believer in national security who raged against whistleblowers on his blog, he worked for the CIA and the National Security Agency before joining Booz Allen Hamilton, the private firm that that serviced the NSA’s computer systems. Yet in May 2013 he was responsible for the most spectacular security breach in US history when he flew to Hong Kong and handed over thousands of classified documents to journalists. The documents, exposing the extraordinary willingness of the NSA to spy on its own citizens, caused a major international row, the repercussions of which are still being played out today.
How and why did he do it? What made him risk a lifetime in jail? And what are the implications of the revelations for national security, for international relations, and for privacy in the digital age? Luke Harding, award-winning Guardian journalist and author of The Snowden Files, an account of the scandal that reads like a thriller by Le Carré, comes to Dublin to explore the issues behind the greatest single act of whistleblowing in history.