NSA spied on Al Jazeera internal communications, report says

The NSA was able to access and read the Arab news broadcaster's communications with "notable success," according to documents from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden seen by Der Spiegel.

Declan McCullagh/CNET
Government snooping appears to be a recurring theme among media outlets. Just weeks after an editor at the Guardian said that British government agents smashed a computer containing sensitive information, Der Spiegel is reporting that the US National Security Agency accessed "internal communications" from Arab news broadcaster Al Jazeera.

The NSA, spurred by Al Jazeera's close coverage of al-Qaeda, hacked into the media organization's internal communications system, according to documents from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden reportedly seen by Der Spiegel. The agency also allegedly hacked into the airline reservation services for Russian airline Aeroflot.

A document dated March 23, 2006 shows that the NSA was able to access and read Al Jazeera's communications with "notable success," Der Spiegel reported. The US agency was reportedly able to access and read the communications of "interesting targets" who were protected by Al Jazeera. It's not yet known whether employees or journalists at the news organization were spied on as well.

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