The Fox News host's communications, which were said to be about listing an interview with Russian President Vladimir Putin, were not an aim of the NSA, which the agency has already started, and were not accidentally collected through the process of spying on a foreign target, sources told the Record.
The report announced Carlson's identity was rather disclosed through a process recognized as "unmasking," which is when the names of U.S. citizens that are mentioned though covered up in final intelligence reports about the surveillance of foreigners are published upon the request of authorized officials, who have the ability to request the disclosures, often to better learn the information.
Carlson first told his audience of millions late on June 28 regarding a government source informing him of an NSA "spying" scheme to leak his team's electronic communications to take his program off the air. Carlson asserted in part that the communications at problem were talks with U.S.-based Kremlin intermediaries, who have not been publicly identified, about setting up an interview with Putin.
The NSA issued a rare public statement on June 29 announcing that Carlson was "never" a target of the agency and denied a scheme to get Carlson's show taken off the air.
Though, the statement did not preclude the occurrence any communications were incidentally collected or Carlson's name being unmasked by some official in the Biden administration.
“For the NSA to unmask Tucker Carlson or any journalist attempting to secure a newsworthy interview is entirely unacceptable and raises serious questions about their activities as well as their original denial, which was wildly misleading,” a Fox News spokesperson told the Record.
The NSA refused to comment about the report. The identities of the Record's sources remain unclear, and it is not apparent whether they are even with the NSA. They did claim, the report stated, that the NSA found no proof to support Carlson's allegation about the agency spying on him to take his show off the air.
The identity of the official or officials who made the reported unmasking request remains unknown, yet, the report cites a former government official who theorized Carlson learned about the case through an offer of a "defensive briefing" by the FBI against a potential foreign influence operation.
Republicans in Congress, including Senate Intelligence Committee Vice Chairman Marco Rubio and House Intelligence Committee ranking member Devin Nunes, have made information requests to the NSA as they investigate the matter.