State Department assessing damage from cables leak
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Last Updated: Saturday, June 12, 2010, 17:12
  
Washington: The US State Department says it is studying the computer hard drives used by an Army intelligence analyst in Iraq, trying to assess the potential damage if allegations are true that the analyst leaked tens of thousands of classified diplomatic documents to a whistleblower website.

Department spokesman PJ Crowley said yesterday that the Bureau of Diplomatic Security is helping in the forensic analysis of the data stored on one or more hard drives from computers believed to have been used by Army Spc Bradley Manning, 22.

Manning, who has not been charged with any crime, is being detained in Kuwait pending an Army criminal investigation of unauthorized leaks of classified information.

"We take this seriously," Crowley said. "Any release of classified material to those who are not entitled to have it is a serious breach of our security and, you know, can cause potential damage to our national security interests."

Former computer Hacker Adrian Lamo says Manning claimed in a series of online chats that he downloaded 260,000 classified or sensitive State Department cables and transmitted them by computer to the website Wikileaks.org.

Crowley said examination of the hard drives, which arrived in Washington on Thursday from Baghdad, should allow officials to verify what documents Manning may have downloaded and whether he sent them to an unauthorized recipient.

PTI


First Published: Saturday, June 12, 2010, 17:12


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