Edward Snowden

US accused of hacking Chinese mobile phones

Edward Snowden, the former CIA technician who blew the whistle on global surveillance operations, has opened a new front against the US authorities, claiming they hacked into Chinese mobile phone companies to access millions of private text messages.

His latest claims came as US officials, who have filed criminal charges against him, warned Hong Kong to comply with an extradition request or risk complicating diplomatic relations after some of the territory’s politicians called for Snowden to be protected.

The latest developments will raise fears that the US’s action may have pushed Snowden into the hands of the Chinese, triggering what could be a tense and prolonged diplomatic and legal wrangle between the world’s two leading superpowers.

Snowden, whose whereabouts have not been publicly known since he checked out of a Hong Kong hotel on 10 June, was reported by the Chinese media on Saturday to be in a “safe place” in the former British colony.

The 30-year-old intelligence analyst has over the past three weeks leaked a series of documents to the Guardian revealing how US and UK secret services gain access to huge amounts of phone and internet data, raising serious questions about privacy in the internet age.

Source & more details: The Daily Star