National Security Agency employees are bummed out.
It seems former NSA contractor Edward Snowden has done more than open the world’s eyes to its surveillance techniques. He’s also severely impacted the agency’s company culture, turning it into a beaten-down group of people who are already on the job hunt. But it’s not all Snowden’s fault. It seems that agency’s workers feel slighted by President Barack Obama, who has yet to visit and reinstate confidence in the NSA’s employees.
“The agency, from top to bottom, leadership to rank and file, feels that it is had no support from the White House even though it’s been carrying out publicly approved intelligence missions,” Joel Brenner, the 2002 to 2006 NSA inspector general, told the Washington Post. “They feel they’ve been hung out to dry, and they’re right.”
Obama has otherwise vocally supported the NSA, though he has also called for a review of surveillance practices in the U.S. He has yet, however, to travel to the NSA to speak to the agency in person.
Without this support, employees seem to be looking for jobs left and right. In order to submit résumés outside of the agency, NSA employees must first have them cleared to make sure no confidential information is released. A former official speaking with the Post said his contact within the clearing department had “never seen so many résumés that people want to have cleared in my life.”
The Post notes that Obama might be trying to delicately balance supporting the nation’s intelligence agency while also respecting the anger obviously felt by U.S. citizens, private companies, and civil rights groups alike. It is rumored the president will visit the NSA once the surveillance process review is complete.