Der Spiegel has published some more NSA secrets provided by celebrity expat Edward Snowden. Documents reviewed by Laura Poitras and reporters at the German magazine show that members of the agency successfully hacked into the public e-mail account of former Mexican President Felipe Calderón in 2010. The NSA, which is already known to have monitored the text messages of current President Enrique Peña Nieto when he was running for office in 2012, was also able to access accounts belonging to Mexican cabinet members. Internal documents called the hacked e-mails “a lucrative source” of “diplomatic, economic and leadership communications which continue to provide insight into Mexico’s political system and internal stability.”
In a separate 2009 operation, the NSA broke into e-mail accounts of officials at Mexico’s Public Security Secretariat, which is responsible for fighting drug and human trafficking. “This hacking operation allowed the NSA not only to obtain information on several drug cartels, but also to gain access to “‘diplomatic talking-points,’” Der Spiegel reports. “In the space of a single year, according to the internal documents, this operation produced 260 classified reports that allowed US politicians to conduct successful talks on political issues and to plan international investments.” These revelations follow previous reports that the NSA spied on Brazil’s government and state-owned oil company, which led President Dilma Rousseff to accuse the United States of “industrial espionage.” This new information about what was happening in Mexico suggests that she was right to be suspicious.