The U.S. National Security Agency (NSA)’s hacking of the e-mail account of former Mexican President Felipe Calderon drew strong criticism from its Foreign Ministry, and made Mexico the latest in the growing list of nations, which includes India, that were targets of covert U.S. surveillance.

Germany’s Der Spiegel , one of the select publications that NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden shared confidential documents with, said that an NSA division called “Tailored Access Operations” (TAO) devises “special methods for special targets”, and in May 2010 this included Mexico.

A “top secret” report said: “TAO successfully exploited a key mail server in the Mexican Presidencia domain within the Mexican Presidential network to gain first-ever access to President Felipe Calderon’s public e-mail account.”

According to the newspaper, the e-mail domain in question was also used by cabinet members, and contained “diplomatic, economic and leadership communications which continue to provide insight into Mexico’s political system and internal stability”. The NSA reportedly described the President’s office as “a lucrative source”.

Numerous reports quoted the Mexican Foreign Ministry condemning the latest allegations about “suspected acts of spying carried out by the NSA.”

More In: Today's Paper