10 Times People Shared Classified Information With Regular Citizens


Since we were little kids we kept and spread secrets. Sometimes a bit of information was just so juicy that we couldn’t keep it in. Other times it just slipped out by mistake. Whatever the case, whether a child or an adult working in the government, secrets flow in and out all the time. As these following examples prove, even generals and presidents have trouble keeping their secrets from friends, foreign dignitaries, journalists and romantic interests.

We’ll kick off with the obvious case of Edward Snowden. His allegations rocked the US and have us all looking at the NSA a bit differently. It turns out that back in the 1970s, the American people weren’t being told the truth and one man let us know it by leaking classified material to the press. Whatever your feelings on Donald Trump, it’s clear he has a problem with leakers. This includes Trump himself as proven by a recent visit of high-ranking Russians to the Oval office. When Mark Felt approached two Washington Post journalists, little did he know what an impact his sharing would have on US history. Plus, he got a cool nickname out of it as well. North of the border, we’ll tell you about a Canadian Vice-Admiral who shared some secrets with a businessman that turned out to cause a lot of trouble. While being interviewed by an author writing a book, one former high-ranking US General revealed a bit too much in terms of a secret operation. In Venezuela, recent political trouble was only amplified when a General was caught on tape suggesting protesters could be taken care of in a rather deadly way. David Petraeus was once a prominent military figure in Washington. Then he got a little too close with a woman writing about his life story. Even Swedish leaders make blunders – such as accidentally giving out all sorts of classified military information to an IT firm in Eastern Europe. Finally, we’ll end off with James Comey, there’s a lot of debate around this former FBI Director and whether or not the information he gave to a Columbia University professor was classified or not.