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The Cybersecurity 202: Glenn Greenwald says Brazil charges are part of a

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global trend to criminalize journalism

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/paloma/the-cybersecurity-202/2020/01/22/the-cybersecurity-202-glenn-greenwald-says-brazil-charges-are-part-of-a-global-trend-to-criminalize-journalism/5e272989602ff14e66056868/

American journalist Glenn Greenwald says the Brazilian government's charges against him are the latest strike in a global campaign by governments across the world to use anti-hacking laws to punish and silence journalists.

“Governments [are] figuring out how they can criminalize journalism based on large-scale digital leaks,” Greenwald told me.

Greenwald, who won a Pulitzer Prize for reporting on leaked documents from former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden in 2014, says the charges are baseless. “Even in democracies —let alone in the authoritarian world — there’s a real struggle to make the law fit criminalizing leaks of this sort,” he said.

Greenwald, who lives in Rio de Janeiro, is facing charges stemming from his reporting on leaked cellphone messages that raised doubts about a corruption investigation that aided the rise of Brazil's far-right President Jair Bolsonaro. Greenwald is accused of being part of a "criminal organization" that allegedly hacked into public officials' cellphones last year to copy messages that were published on his news site, the Intercept Brazil, as my colleagues Miriam Berger and Paul Farhi report.

Greenwald compared the Brazilian charges against him to the Trump administration’s controversial decision to prosecute WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange last year under the main U.S. anti-hacking law, the 1986 Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.