Former President Barack Obama made a last-minute change to the way wiretapped intelligence is shared Jan. 12, which may have contributed to the proliferation of leaks plaguing the Trump administration.
Obama changed the way National Security Agency intelligence is shared 8 days before leaving office, which allows globally intercepted communications to be disseminated across the entire intelligence community.
The change was part of a post-9/11 push by the executive branch to increase intelligence sharing, to ensure that NSA analysts do not miss critically important information. The change is “simply widening the aperture for a larger number of analysts, who will be bound by the existing rules,” the Office of the Director of National Intelligence said at the time.
Obama administration officials also scrambled to spread classified intelligence related to Russian meddling in the 2016 election to as many people within the U.S. government as possible.