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NSA Employee Indicted for 'Leaking Top Secret Info' To a Woman

Employee sent information with his personal email 13 times.


Recently, the United States Department of Justice (DoJ) has claimed that an NSA employee has been sharing highly sensitive data of national security with an individual who allegedly is a private sector employee. 

According to a DoJ announcement and the indictment, an NSA staffer named Mark Unkenholz "held a TOP SECRET/Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) clearance and had lawful access to classified information relating to the national defense." 

The indictment has been unleashed on Thursday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore, which has accused Mark Unkenholz, 60 years old employee of the NSA office that engages with private industry, sent 13 unauthorized emails to the woman who was referred to as “RF” from February 2018 to June 2020, each email was containing top secret information relating to national defense. 

Following the incident, the court said that "reason to believe [the info] could be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of any foreign nation." Further, the justice departs reported that the RF also had a TOP SECRET/SCI clearance from April 2016 until approximately June 2019 through the company she was working for which was named Company 1, however when she switched the company 1 to company 2 her clearance lapsed. 

According to the indictment's timeline, Unkenholz sent the files to RF when she was working at Company 1 and at Company 2. It shows that RF's clearance was not sufficient for these sensitive materials. 
Also, Unkenholz used his personal email address for this act and according to the regulations, the personal email address is not considered as an authorized storage location for sensitive data. In this case, Unkenholz has been charged with 13 counts of willful retention of national defense information on top of the 13 counts of “willful transmission.” Each charge approves 10 years in federal prison.
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