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Ex-CIA employee ID’d but not charged in Vault 7 leak of hacking tools

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(credit: Dominic Byrd-McDevitt – Wikimedia)

Federal authorities have identified a suspect behind last year’s Vault 7 leak of Central Intelligence Agency hacking tools. The trove published to WikiLeaks included exploits and documents for infecting iPhones, Wi-Fi routers, and Cisco Switches, and it represented the biggest-known loss of classified information in CIA history.

According to articles posted by The Washington Post and The New York Times, the suspect is 29-year-old Joshua A. Schulte. FBI agents reportedly searched his Manhattan home a week after the WikiLeaks published its first Vault 7 dispatch in March 2017. A transcript of a court hearing this past January indicates that agents seized phones, computers, and unspecified “top secret government information.” According to the transcript, the evidence immediately made Schulte a target in the leak investigation.

For reasons that are still unknown, Schulte hasn’t been charged in the case despite being arrested more than a year ago. Instead, authorities charged him in August with possessing and transporting child pornography. He has pleaded not guilty in that case. His attorneys have also denied he had any involvement in the Vault 7 leak.

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