CyberNews Briefs

NSA Employee Accused of Sharing National Defense Secrets

Mark Robert Unkenholz, a 60-year-old resident of Maryland, has been accused of sending national defense secrets from his personal email account during his employment at the United States National Security Agency. The 26-count indictment was unsealed on Thursday and claims that Unkenholz willfully transmitted classified National Defense Information (NDI) on 13 different occasions between February 2018 and June 2020. Unkenholz held a Top Secret/SCI clearance and had access to classified information relating to the national defense matters.

The indictment alleges that Unkenholz sent the classified NDI to another individual who was not authorized to access such information, and under the knowledge that the information could be used to the detriment of the United States if it landed in the wrong hands. According to the indictment, Unkenholz transmitted the secrets from his personal email address to the recipient’s private company email address. Some of the charges include offenses relating to retaining the classified NDI in his personal email account, as this type of information may only be stored in an approved facility. Following his arrest last week, Unkenholz pleaded not guilty to all thirteen charges.

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