Saturday, March 11, 2006

And they were worried about Plame?

The Chicago Tribune reports:

The Internet blows CIA cover - It's easy to track America's covert operatives. All you need to know is how to navigate the Internet."
Although the Tribune's initial search for "Central Intelligence Agency" employees turned up only work-related addresses and phone numbers, other Internet-based services provide, usually for a fee but sometimes for free, the home addresses and telephone numbers of U.S. residents, as well as satellite photographs of the locations where they live and work.

Asked how so many personal details of CIA employees had found their way into the public domain, the senior U.S. intelligence official replied that "I don't have a great explanation, quite frankly."

The official noted, however, that the CIA's credo has always been that "individuals are the first person responsible for their cover. If they can't keep their cover, then it's hard for anyone else to keep it. If someone filled out a credit report and put that down, that's just stupid."

One senior U.S. official used a barnyard epithet to describe the agency's traditional system of providing many of its foreign operatives with easily decipherable covers that include little more than a post office box for an address and a non-existent company as an employer."

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