NSA leaks changing way terrorists doing business, intelligence sources say

Al Qaeda, terror groups to change strategies ... 02:11

(CBS News) U.S. intelligence sources say there have already been consequences to National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden's actions, and it is changing the way terrorists do business.

Snowden, who leaked details of two U.S. surveillance programs, is said to now be holed-up in a Moscow airport. He is believed to be spending yet another day in the transit zone where he's been in a holding pattern since requesting asylum in Ecuador.

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On Wednesday, Ecuador's foreign minister said it could take up to two months before Ecuador decides if it will grant Snowden's appeal, so his original plan to fly to Cuba and then on to Ecuador may now be in doubt.

Meanwhile, the U.S. is continuing to push Russia to expel Snowden so he can be returned to face criminal charges.

While a prosecution is uncertain, U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said there's no question the leaks have been damaging. He said, "Make no mistake, this violation of our laws was a serious security breach."

Intelligence sources say al Qaeda and other terror groups are already taking advantage of the leaks by avoiding Internet sites terrorists now know the NSA is monitoring.

Philip Mudd, a former CIA analyst, said that when U.S. sources and methods are revealed terrorists, like the former head of al Qaeda, change how they communicate. Mudd said, "Bin Laden was tipped off that we had his satellite phone, and he went off the net."

But the U.S. also alters its security measures in response to changing terrorist tactics. "In the short term, there is going to be a problem because they're going to read the newspapers, they are going to study up, and they're going to change activity," Mudd said. "But in the long term, I think the U.S. intelligence community is going to have the strategic advantage. We'll find them, and we'll hunt them down."

The NSA is still working to understand the full scope of the damage caused by the leaks, CBS News' Bob Orr reported. It's believed that Snowden took more than 200 files, and officials fear that all of that has been compromised and lost to foreign intelligence services.

Watch Orr's report above.