The Washington Post is reporting that federal prosecutors will seek to indict a former NSA contractor accused of stealing most of the agency’s hacking tools. Harold T. Martin III, 52, was arrested last August and has been held since then awaiting charges. He formerly worked for the NSA’s Tailored Access Operations (TAO) unit, an elite group that develops and deploys software meant to penetrate foreign computer networks. He is said to have stolen “many thousands of pages” of classified information and 50 TB of digital data, including 75 percent of the TAO’s hacking tools.
Martin could face 30 years to life in prison depending on the eventual charges.
His attorneys have previously said that he took the tools home in order to improve them and become better at his job, not to pass them to a foreign government.