CNN — The Department of Homeland Security documents critiquing the response to a simulated anthrax attack on Super Bowl Sunday were marked “For Official Use Only” and “important for national security.”
Recipients of the draft “after-action” reports were told to keep them locked up after business hours and to shred them prior to discarding. They were admonished not to share their contents with anyone who lacked “an operational need-to-know.”
But security surrounding the December 2017 reports suffered an embarrassing breach:
A CNN employee discovered copies of them, along with other sensitive DHS material, in the seat-back pocket of a commercial plane.
When I fly I put into place a proprietary personal protocol system to ensure everything goes as securely and smoothly as possible. It’s much different than my usual system. I first remove my house keys from my front right pocket and toss them into my backpack; we won’t be needing those on the plane. This opens up crucial space, as the front pockets are both the most accessible and the most secure. I put there my boarding pass and ID, which are the two most important items for flying. Filling out the rest of my pants, I slide my phone in front left, bag tags back left, and wallet back right. We’re full, efficient, and equipped to travel.
There is, from this point of preparedness, no foreseeable situation where I could lose my ID. It’s the most important of the bunch; can’t afford to lose it. I tap my front right pocket every few seconds to ensure she’s there.
So, the point is, you really gotta ask yourself — how in the literal fuck does a guy just leave super important, sensitive documents in the seat-back pocket of a plane? This his job! He’s presumably trained not to lose shit. I’m not even trained and I have this fool-proof system that’s never failed.
It’s his job, his life, his livelihood to secure shit… and he can’t secure docs on a plane?
I’m not even mad, I’m amazed. Not only are we a little suspect with our response to a potential Super Bowl anthrax attack but we’re also just leaving this sensitive information on airplanes. Jesus Christ.
Final wrinkle, of course a CNN employee is the one to randomly find the documents. You can’t make this shit up.