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Government contractors with security clearances, such as Edward Snowden, aren't legally protected from whistleblowing even by going through the proper channels. But John Mahoney, of the law firm Tully Rinckey, said Snowden should have defaulted to the standard whistleblowing procedure used by government employees in the intelligence community, who are protected under the law.
Intelligence community contractors, similar to Booz Allen, likely are reevaluating employees who have access to classified information in order to identify any questionable personnel, according to Steve Ryan, leader of government strategies practice group at McDermott, Will and Emery law firm.
Booz Allen Hamilton announced Tuesday it has fired Edward Snowden, the contractor employee who admitted leaking details about classified National Security Agency programs to reporters. The company said Snowden was fired June 10 because he violated company policies, including its code of ethics.
Edward Snowden, a former technical assistant for the CIA and current employee of defense contractor Booz Allen Hamilton, revealed himself Sunday as the source of disclosures about the U.S. government's secret surveillance programs, risking prosecution by the U.S. government. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper called the revelation of the intelligence-gathering programs as reckless and said it has done "huge, grave damage."