TIME National Security

Edward Snowden Warns Government Spying Could Grow Under Donald Trump

Edward Snowden Gives First Interview In Russia
Barton Gellman—Getty Images Edward Snowden has warned that open government in the U.S. is being substituted by "sheer authoritarianism" (file photo)

Trump has "a very different set of values," Snowden said

Edward Snowden has warned that President-elect Donald Trump could reverse the U.S. government’s pledges to limit domestic surveillance, which could lead to increased spying within the country.

Snowden, who has been stranded in Moscow since he disclosed classified information about the National Security Agency’s widespread surveillance in 2013, made the comments during a teleconference hosted by Buenos Aires University’s law school, Reuters reports.

Although the federal government has pledged not to engage in indiscriminate domestic surveillance following Snowden’s revelations three years ago, Snowden said he questioned whether Trump’s government “who have a very different set of values and can govern in the dark” may reverse this policy. “This is kind of the challenge that we’re facing today in the United States with the result of the last election,” Snowden added.

When Snowden, who is charged in the U.S. with violations of the Espionage Act, was asked whether he thought Trump’s election might increase his chances of being pardoned by the government, he simply responded: “Who knows?”


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