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Home » Richard Ledgett: The NSA responds to Edward Snowden’s TED Talk (Transcript)

Richard Ledgett: The NSA responds to Edward Snowden’s TED Talk (Transcript)

In response to Edward Snowden at TED2014, NSA deputy director Richard Ledgett answers Anderson’s questions about the balance between security and protecting privacy. This event happened in March 2014.

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Chris Anderson: We had Edward Snowden here a couple days ago, and this is response time. And several of you have written to me with questions to ask our guest here from the NSA. So Richard Ledgett is the 15th deputy director of the National Security Agency, and he’s a senior civilian officer there, acts as its chief operating officer, guiding strategies, setting internal policies, and serving as the principal advisor to the director. And all being well, welcome Rick Ledgett to TED.

Richard Ledgett: I’m really thankful for the opportunity to talk to folks here. I look forward to the conversation, so thanks for arranging for that.

Chris Anderson: Thank you, Rick. We appreciate you joining us. It’s certainly quite a strong statement that the NSA is willing to reach out and show a more open face here. You saw, I think, the talk and interview that Edward Snowden gave here a couple days ago. What did you make of it?

Richard Ledgett: So I think it was interesting. We didn’t realize that he was going to show up there, so kudos to you guys for arranging a nice surprise like that. I think that, like a lot of the things that have come out since Mr. Snowden started disclosing classified information, there were some kernels of truth in there, but a lot of extrapolations and half-truths in there, and I’m interested in helping to address those. I think this is a really important conversation that we’re having in the United States and internationally, and I think it is important and of import, and so given that, we need to have that be a fact-based conversation, and we want to help make that happen.

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