Permanent Record

05 Apr 2020

Before reading Permanent Record I was somewhat aware of personal data being gathered by companies and the government, but it was still an eye-opener. The extent to which the US intelligence agencies have gone to collect and store data is mind-boggling.

Permanent Record delves into the journey of Edward Snowden. Transformation of a nerdy kid into one of the most well-known whistleblowers in the world. How he discovered perhaps the largest surveillance program, how he came to the decision of exposing it, how he went about it and landed in Russia in the process.

It also sheds light on the toll this act took on his personal life. The sacrifices he had to make to expose the surveillance programs. The slow process of gathering evidence, sifting through it, protecting sensitive data. All this with the looming threat of being discovered and facing harsh punishment before the task is accomplished. With the likelihood of being labeled as an anti-national.

I would recommend this book if you are curious about the whole Snowden saga - what made him expose the surveillance programs, how he managed to collect and release the evidence, and how it impacted his life. I listened to the audio version on Audible. The book is suitable for listening and is well narrated by Holter Graham.

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