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7 December 2014

David Blishen: Hong Kong Data Destroyer

David Blishen @blishen Editorial systems developer at The Guardian

This responds to:

Laura Poitras: "So the first reporting that we had done when we got there was focusing on the NSA and I think that The Guardian, because it was U.S. intelligence that we were reporting on, maybe felt that it was less risky for them.

But what happens in Hong Kong is that when Ewen MacAskill from The Guardian joins us, Snowden starts to explain to him that GCHQ is actually worse than the NSA in terms of it’s collection, and he starts to describe a program called Tempora. He shared with MacAskill documents relating to GCHQ, and at some point some of those documents made it to London and that’s when they had a bit of a freak-out. There was another person who came to Hong Kong when we were there who was helping with some technical things, and that person was instructed to destroy some material, but nothing actually in the end was lost."

A sends:

David Blishen named as destroyer of Guardian discs in London basement-

David Blishen named among Snowden reporting group-

David Blishen named as photographer of Poitras-Greenwald-Macaskill: in Hong Kong?



From left: the Guardian’s Ewen MacAskill and Glenn Greenwald, and documentary-maker Laura Poitras. (Photograph: David Blishen for the Guardian)


Three Guardian staff members – Johnson, executive director Sheila Fitzsimons and computer expert David Blishen – carried out the demolition of the Guardian’s hard drives.


David Blishen

Group Product Manager, Editorial Tools at Guardian News & Media

London, United Kingdom

Media Production

Current Guardian News & Media

Previous Guardian News and Media, Automatrix, Thumb / Nettec

Education UCL


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