U.S. spy agencies decry latest Snowden revelations

WASHINGTON (Reuters)- U.S. spy agencies said on Friday that the latest media revelations based on leaks from former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden will likely damage U.S. and allied intelligence efforts.

On Thursday, the Guardian, the New York Times and journalistic nonprofit ProPublica published stories saying the security agency has secretly developed the ability to crack or circumvent commonplace Internet encryption used to protect everything from email to financial transactions. The stories were based on documents made public by Snowden, now a fugitive living under asylum in Russia.

The reports also said the NSA had worked with Government Communications Headquarters, its British partner, and had used a variety of means, ranging from the insertion of "back doors" in popular tech products and services, to supercomputers, secret court orders and the manipulation of international processes for setting encryption standards.

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