Snowden Hired by a Major Russian Website
NSA intelligence leaker Edward Snowden has found a job in Russia with an unidentified major online resource three months after being granted temporary political asylum in the country, Snowden's lawyer said Thursday.
The former defense contractor, who leaked details of classified U.S. Internet surveillance programs this summer, will start working as a technical support specialist for one of Russia's biggest websites on Friday, lawyer Anatoly Kucherena told RIA Novosti.
Kucherena declined to name Snowden's new employer "for security reasons."
Snowden arrived at Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport in June on a flight from Hong Kong, but his U.S. passport was canceled and he was forced to live in the airport's transit zone while the leaders of various countries discussed the prospect of granting him asylum.
After a month of uncertainty, Snowden was granted asylum in Russia for at least a year by Russia's Federal Migration Service, despite calls from the U.S. to extradite him back to his homeland to face espionage charges.
Snowden's exact whereabouts have been kept secret since he left the airport, though authorities have said that he is not in Moscow.
Technology news website Digit.ru reported that Snowden may have joined social networking site VKontakte, a St. Petersburg-headquartered company that is Russia's equivalent of Facebook.
However, VKontakte spokesman Georgy Lobushkin declined to comment on the report, while spokesmen for Yandex and Mail.ru stated categorically that they are not the intelligence leaker's new employers.
In August, VKontakte's founder, Pavel Durov, publicly invited Snowden to work for his company, but the offer went unanswered.