Jenna McLaughlin

Reporter and blogger covering surveillance and national security for The Intercept.

Jenna McLaughlin appears in the following:

The role of cyber weapons in Russia's war on Ukraine

Thursday, March 02, 2023

Ukrainian officials say they have been fighting the first "hybrid war," in cyberspace and on the ground. A year in, digital tools remain an important — if ambiguous — component of the conflict.


Hackers steal sensitive law enforcement data in a breach of the U.S. Marshals Service

Tuesday, February 28, 2023

The federal agency has revealed that it was the victim of a ransomware attack last week in which hackers stole sensitive data.


Spy balloons have the spotlight, but Chinese digital espionage has gone on for years

Thursday, February 16, 2023

While a fleet of alleged Chinese spy balloons have gotten a lot of attention, hackers for the People's Republic of China have been stealing vast quantities of data through cyberattacks for decades.


The U.S. shot down a car-sized object above Alaska's coast

Saturday, February 11, 2023

The U.S. has shot down a car-sized object flying at a high altitude above Alaska's coast. It's unclear if it's a surveillance instrument, like the balloon that crossed over the nation last week.


U.S. takes down Chinese spy balloon off of South Carolina coast

Saturday, February 04, 2023

U.S. military officials say that a Chinese spy balloon has been shot down, just off the coast of South Carolina.


The U.S. has downed a Chinese spy balloon off the coast of South Carolina

Saturday, February 04, 2023

The suspected Chinese spy balloon was noticed in Montana and slowly crossed the U.S. China expressed its "strong dissatisfaction and protest" over the downing.


FBI says it 'hacked the hackers' to shut down major ransomware group

Thursday, January 26, 2023

The FBI spent months spying on the ransomware group Hive and secretly helped victims before shutting the entire operation down.


Chinese researchers are making claims that, if true, would threaten national security

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Chinese researchers are claiming they can break modern encryption with today's quantum computers. Experts are skeptical, but the possibility remains a top U.S. national security concern.


The National Security Agency revamps its museum, revealing secrets

Monday, December 26, 2022

Before the mid-70's, many Americans didn't know the National Security Agency existed. The agency revamped its museum and some of the secrets exposed are surprising some national security experts.


The revamped NSA museum opens with displays of former nuke secrets, spy artifacts

Saturday, December 17, 2022

The overhaul of the aging museum in Fort Meade, Md., was unveiled just weeks before NSA's 70th anniversary in November. The museum is located near the top-secret spy agency.


The Pacific island nation of Vanuatu has been knocked offline for more than a month

Tuesday, December 06, 2022

The prime minister says about 70 percent of services have been restored, but officials have not commented on a cause or whether ransom was paid. Nor did they respond to NPR's requests for comment.


FTX collapse offers lessons about the cyber risks of cryptocurrency investing

Friday, December 02, 2022

The scandal involving the "King of Crypto" and the crash of his cryptocurrency exchange FTX continues to unfold. Former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried is under investigation for financial crimes.


Quantum computing could lead to advances — but also national security threats

Monday, November 28, 2022

Cybersecurity experts recently gathered in New York to talk about how to defend against a technology that doesn't yet exist. Quantum computing would usher in advances — and national security threats.


Those fake active shooter calls to schools? A similar thing happened before

Monday, October 24, 2022

As schools across the U.S. are targeted by false calls about active shooters, NPR has found evidence that a similar scheme took place in the spring.


Russia and China are in a battle with the U.S. over control of an obscure tech agency

Friday, October 14, 2022

One tech agency has been making sure communications travel across borders for over a century. Now, Russia and China are in a battle with the U.S. and its Western allies over control of that agency.


Examining 2 recent cyberattacks against NATO members

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

The war in Ukraine has put a spotlight on NATO. For alliance members, an attack on one is considered an attack on all. But those obligations are less clear in the cyber sphere.


How an Illinois military base transports an unprecedented flow of weapons to Ukraine

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Moving the people and stuff that the U.S. military needs is a massive puzzle. Aid for Ukraine is being sent from Illinois' Scott Air Force Base, which must deal with logistics and possible threats.


Ransomware attacks are hitting small businesses. These are experts' top defense tips

Friday, August 12, 2022

A report released this month by the Ransomware Task Force offers small and medium-sized businesses a series of steps to take to deal with cyberattacks and ransomware.


A new blueprint offers advice for businesses to protect against ransomware attacks

Thursday, August 11, 2022

Small businesses paid millions to cybercriminals last year to unlock their files. That's why experts released a new blueprint with advice on how to defend against and recover from ransomware attacks.


How a nonprofit group has become the biggest repository for hacked Russian data

Tuesday, July 05, 2022

The war in Ukraine inspired hackers to steal reams of sensitive data from inside Russia. A transparency group wants to publicize that information without actively participating in the conflict.