Edward Snowden just reportedly took a job at a Russian website. Who would want to hire him?

October 31, 2013

In this image made from video released by WikiLeaks on Friday, Oct. 11, 2013, former National Security Agency systems analyst Edward Snowden speaks during a presentation ceremony for the Sam Adams Award in Moscow, Russia. (AP Photo)

The Associated Press is reporting former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden has accepted a job doing technical support for a "major" Russian Web site. According to the AP, one of Snowden's lawyers says the NSA leaker will start his new gig Friday, but won't reveal which company he'll be working for.

After stealing his former employer's secrets and giving many of them away, Snowden's track record might not endear him to very many who work in human resources. But Snowden has had to fend off "a lot" of job offers since he fled the United States this summer, including one from Russia's version of Facebook, VKontakte.

To future employers, what Snowden did when he left the NSA may be less valuable than his attitude — self-confident, independent, opinionated.

"The act that made him famous was singular," David Auerbach, a former Google and Microsoft engineer, wrote in Slate in June. "Snowden himself is not."

Besides, despite his sometimes abrasive exterior, Snowden is still the same, highly skilled technician he was before he became a leaker. So long as those skills remain sharp, Snowden will probably keep thriving.

In technology, as with many industries, where you've been is interesting. What you're capable of is more important.

Brian Fung covers technology for The Washington Post.
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Brian Fung | October 31, 2013