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Former NSA chief ignites controversy over cybersecurity consulting

Former NSA chief ignites controversy over cybersecurity consulting
photo courtesy of SHUTTERSTOCK

Does the former NSA chief know it's illegal to sell state secrets? That's what one congressman is asking.

Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Florida) has sent letters to several financial organizations warning them about securing the services of former NSA chief Gen. Keith Alexander. Here's why:

To capitalize on his recent departure from military intelligence—Alexander resigned in March following months of revelations by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden—the general is offering his security expertise to the banking industry for the fire sale price of $600,000 per month after first asking for $1 million. There are threats everywhere, Alexander warns, and “It would be devastating if one of our major banks was hit, because they’re so interconnected.”

And why is that an issue? Rep. Grayson is concerned that the only possible benefit that Gen. Alexander could offer these billionaire banking organizations is through his intimate knowledge of classified information. Here's what he wrote to the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, the Consumer Bankers Association, the Financial Services Roundtable and the Clearing House:

I question how Mr. Alexander can provide any of the services he is offering unless he discloses or misuses classified information, including extremely sensitive sources and methods. Without the classified information he acquired in his former position, he literally would have nothing to offer to you.

Gen. Alexander has yet to respond to these insinuations.

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Source: Wired
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