Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. File picture: The Guardian

Moscow - The United States need a re-examination of national system of whistleblower protections, former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden said.

“We need iron-clad, enforceable protections for whistleblowers, and we need a public record of success stories. Protect the people who go to members of Congress with oversight roles, and if their efforts lead to a positive change in policy - recognise them for their efforts. There are no incentives for people to stand up against an agency on the wrong side of the law today, and that's got to change,” Snowden was quoted as saying by The Guardian on Sunday.

He added that response to the inspector general with evidences of wrongdoings could be a mistake, but “going to the press involves serious risks, but at least you've got a chance.”

Snowden's words became the response to an interview with John Crane, former senior Pentagon investigator, published by The Guardian earlier on Sunday.

Crane said that reporting about corruption and wrongdoings to country's authorities could become a “trap” for whistleblowers.

In the interview, Crane reported about the situation with the former NSA official Thomas Drake, who reported the NSA leadership about inefficiency and possible illegality of one of agency's surveillance programs. Nevertheless, Drake's response led to legal prosecution against him.

Snowden started making revelations about widespread US global surveillance in 2013.

The same year, Russia granted the whistleblower temporary asylum for one year.

In August 2014, Snowden received a three-year residence permit to live in Russia.

In 2013, the US authorities sent a diplomatic note, urging the Norwegian authorities to arrest and extradite Snowden should he arrive in the country.

Sputnik