Glenn Greenwald's home was burgled, and the only thing stolen was a laptop computer belonging to Greenwald's partner, the Guardian journalist revealed last week. Making the incident more suspicious, the theft occurred the day after Greenwald told his partner on the phone that he would be sending him encrypted files of NSA documents passed on by Edward Snowden.
"When I was in Hong Kong, I spoke to my partner in Rio via Skype and told him I would send an electronic encrypted copy of the documents," Greenwald told the Daily Beast. "I did not end up doing it. Two days later his laptop was stolen from our house and nothing else was taken. Nothing like that has happened before. I am not saying it's connected to this, but obviously the possibility exists."
Greenwald and Snowden have apparently sent multiple encrypted files containing not-yet-leaked NSA documents to different people, which they can't yet decrypt because they haven't been given the passwords. The precautions are intended to ensure that "if anything happens to Snowden," information on NSA surveillance is not lost to the public, as Greenwald explained to the Daily Beast.
If Snowden and Greenwald have stashed NSA files in many different places, it will be virtually impossible to prevent further leaks. However, interested parties may want to know what leaks are in the pipeline, and access to Greenwald's partner's laptop would help with that.
Greenwald and Snowden are anxious to avoid leaking details of US technology or ongoing operations that most people would support. "I do not want to help other states get better at surveillance," or "ruin ongoing operations from the US government that very few people would object to the United States doing," Greenwald said.