They expressed astonishment that Mr. Martin managed to take home such a vast collection of classified material over at least 16 years, undetected by security officers at his workplaces, including the N.S.A., the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and Pentagon offices.
I could understand a contractor coming in for a specific project requiring a specialist.
One of my remaining Friday morning group of friends, George, was the electronics/room environment/controls specialist at IBM’s huge Austin facility until he retired at 58. Since then, he has done month long projects for other folks, including Chinese companies, finding glitches and spikes, hunting down and changing out motherboards with heating problems, measuring the cooling necessary in an enclosed area, imposing clean standards in a room, but also rewriting control software code and substituting parts that gives him access to secret or proprietary stuff. George often faces days of security checks on his work that slow him down, as one result, but allay his employer’s fears, as another.
Of course I am sure NSA has in-house employed engineers for the job of keeping the control systems operational and up to date, but I am sure there would be a need for specialists from time-to-time.
I draw a distinction between that use of short term one-off specialists and Martin having so many years of continuing access. That’s crazy.
Working at NSA should come with weekly polygraph tests and federal courthouse level searches every morning and every night, at least. Whatever they are doing to secure against physical theft by thumb drive, it isn’t working.
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