WikiLeaks forces change in intel community
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper at CSIS conference
January 26th, 2012
03:58 PM ET

WikiLeaks forces change in intel community

By CNN's Pam Benson

The WikiLeaks disclosure of hundreds of thousands of American documents continues to cast a shadow over the U.S. intelligence community.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told an information-sharing conference Thursday that plugging leaks of classified materials is still a challenge for the community as it develops new systems to protect information while at the same time ensuring the right people have access to it.

WikiLeaks, the international online group that publishes secret government documents it receives from outside sources, set off a firestorm a year and a half ago when it made public on its website U.S. diplomatic cables and other sensitive documents, most of them pertaining to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

Pvt. Bradley Manning, an Army intelligence officer, is accused of leaking the documents to WikiLeaks and is being held in military custody awaiting word of whether he will be court-martialed.

The fact Manning had access to so much secret information called into question whether the government had gone too far in responding to one of the biggest failures associated with the September 11th terrorist attacks. The intelligence community and law enforcement were faulted for failing to share information that might have prevented the attacks.

Clapper called the WikiLeaks disclosure a "terrible event" that heightened the intelligence community's sensitivity to inside threats. He said some changes have already been made to monitor information and keep track of who has access to it. But he said it is a work in progress.

"We have to do more to both tag data and ensure that we can properly identify people so that they are actually authorized to receive the information," he said.

In the end, Clapper said, he believes this will promote both security and sharing within the intelligence community. "If you know what the data is in question, you know where it is and you know with whom it can be shared, then you can account for it. ... Then you are in a much better posture from both a security as well as a sharing standpoint," he said.

How long will it take? "Our plan is over, say, the next five years, I think ,we'll have made some serious and notable changes," he said.

In the meantime, the man who created WikiLeaks is set to host his own TV series. The WikiLeaks website described the series with Julian Assange as in-depth conversations that "will draw together controversial voices from across the political spectrum - iconoclasts, visionaries and power insiders - each to offer a window on the world tomorrow and their ideas on how to secure a brighter future."

The series is scheduled to begin in mid-March and will be seen on the Russian RT network.

Assange is currently under house arrest in England. He is fighting efforts to extradite him to Sweden, where he faces sexual assault charges.

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Filed under: Clapper • Intelligence • ODNI • WikiLeaks
soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. increase traffic

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    April 4, 2012 at 7:19 pm | Reply
  2. Andrey

    A common, Wikileaks is a big nothing. They probably have a few confidential documents in there. But these rare pearls of information were drawn in tons and tons of garbage dumped there by US government to hide there whatever was worth hiding! Here come these hundreds of thousands American documents the author of the article refers to from the start. Now you have more chance finding something important just by walking on the street, than digging all that rubbish! Pathetic liberal shmuck!

    January 27, 2012 at 9:46 am | Reply
    • Bob

      @Andrey

      WTF does this have to do with Liberals? I don't think most people are Liberals as so much anti-Conservative because you guys are so hateful. I think 90% of the trolling are Conservatives whining about Lib-uh-ruhls. I am not voting for Obama because I like him..he is pretty atrocious. But, slightly less disgusting than you the hateful hordes of right-wing trolls and their leaders.

      January 27, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Reply
  3. michaelfury

    http://michaelfury.wordpress.com/2011/03/04/enemies-list/

    January 27, 2012 at 7:30 am | Reply
  4. A Regular Joe

    "Pvt. Bradley Manning, an Army intelligence officer..."

    Manning WAS NOT an Intelligence Officer, he was an Intelligence Analyst as an enlisted soldier. He committed treason against the United States and should be executed for crimes against the government and putting thousands of service member's lives at risk.

    January 27, 2012 at 4:01 am | Reply
    • Snoot

      As should the entire Bush administration.

      January 27, 2012 at 11:37 am | Reply
  5. Richard

    Ding Dongs are running our Government and Military. Look at the field of presidential candidates shaping up, I could just cry.

    January 27, 2012 at 3:22 am | Reply
  6. JOSHUA

    DNI OFFICE OTHER A FOR KNOWN CRIME IN NOTES AN STUDENT WORLD TRAVEL CRIMES AN TREASONS OF MISSING PERSONS THE CONGRESS IS CALL ONCE MORE BY PAINS OF DEATH FOR WHAT TAKEN PLACE ON NETWORK BY THE OFFICES RULES AN LAW THIS IS AND ADD NOTE TO PHONE CALLS AN EMAIL NOTES IN CASE OF GRATER TREASONS, PLACES GOV HADE ME MAKE ARE NOTHING TO NEDDEL ADDICTED ELDER THEN WORLD WAR TWO AN SLAVE TRADE I ERIC BY THE H CALL TREASON AN THE OFFICES TO WORK THOSE OF CHEMICAL AN RAPE HARM TO ME AS A CHILD THE NOTES TO LAW AN DNI TO STOP CRIMES AN TREASON HAVE NO WORKED TO BLOCK THEM IN START, YET DEATH ONLY FIGHTS BY LAW FOR TREASONS AN YOU OWE ME ANOTHER BIRTHDAY FEB ONE, THE ADDICTED AN GODS USERS WHOM SLAVE WIFE AN CHEMICAL HARM IN PLACE OF DEATH FIGHT MUST LEARN WAR IS NOT A TOY OR A GAME TO PLACE NO ARE WORK AS LAW ENFORCEMENT SUCH AS YOUR SELF TAKE THIS ADD NOTE FOR SAFTY FOR KNOW TAKEN TO BE ELECTED AN WORSE PLACED ALL READY AS PRESADENT BY REQUEST YET
    NET FAIL I WANT AIR RAID WARDONS AN NET BACK TO WORKING , NOT SPIES AN CRIME

    January 26, 2012 at 10:59 pm | Reply
  7. Rodrigo

    To leak secret documents is wrong, to abuse of that secrecy privacy lying to people on their faces about an ilegal war is what created the need to find the real truth behind scenes, Wikileaks provided the evidence that we all knew at some point, that was the only way for us regular people to say, enough is enough and thats why Obama won, because you can lie to people for so long before it blows right in your face, not of course nobody likes to get caughted, so what do we learn? nothing, we just shoot the messenger, thats what whoever is behind this does...keep lying until the lies become truth ( Dick Cheney)🙂. Enjoy your little world. We know better now than before.

    January 26, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Reply
  8. Rodrigo

    Assange? a traitor?, the question is a traitor to who?..To me, he is a hero, that stands for truth, if it wasnt for that information leaked, we wouldnt have known of those inocent people killed in Irak, yes, the US has lost lives in Irak, but who put them there?, a failure on intelligence?, why nobody has been jailed guilty of war ( fictitious) crimes?... thruth of this matter is, US's abuses got caughted thanks to people like Assange, its easy to blame the man for disclosing "highly sensitive intelligence documents", what about the hard bodies evidence of the people murdered on an ilegal war?. James, Assange under your views must spend jail time for treason, so whats your comment on the people that commited war crimes in Irak? and who are they in your view?, or in your view is there any? or did the killings really happen?,

    January 26, 2012 at 7:40 pm | Reply
    • Cindi

      It appears that you were absent at school when the teacher taught the meaning of a hero.

      January 28, 2012 at 5:30 am | Reply
    • Sarcasticmexican1

      You loose all credibility and the right to argue your point when you can't even spell Iraq right, which is basically what your argument is based around.

      February 23, 2012 at 10:39 pm | Reply
  9. mipolitic

    i can only guess but the back drop behind the director stands for , catch suspicious intentions surveillance, this ass-ange should be draged out of england by the m i 6 group and brought to justice in the gitmo resort , and questioned for the next 45 years. and all funds siezed around the world to pay for his most uncomfortable accommodations. ho and perhaps those that aided him can be placed in nicer places sush as max security prisons.

    January 26, 2012 at 6:14 pm | Reply
    • robroy

      hmmmm, good point you brought up,mi-6 aren't they part of the co-op group with those American agencies that put all this bullshit info out to the world.not one individual in any of these agencies was held accountable for the bullshit that was slung but a group that put the truth out there [both the yanks and brits aren't denying it] are being branded traitors and criminals.So my question to you mipolitic is if you want people who at least show the proof while telling a story put in prison, then how demented is your mind when you support bullshitting mouth piece's who do things behind closed doors.apparently it shows what kind of society you support !!

      January 26, 2012 at 9:46 pm | Reply
      • mipolitic

        well robroy if you vote than you practice freedoms that many can only wish for. and the freedom to post comments also is a wish for many but not a reality. we vote , we speak , we live , we worship if we choose , we can even protest, and we can do these things and much more because of men and women in uniform that perserve and protect us and our freedoms. so when these men and women are endangered by actions of others in a none combative ways it is the reasponsibilty of the government of the people to take action against traders that release names of those in operatios and actions against an enemy of the country. so you can vote and continue to practice your freedom that these men and women protect , and perhaps through your vote and speech things will change to your desire , so until then you can witness the will of the people through the government that they have voted for. enjoy

        January 26, 2012 at 10:15 pm |
      • robroy

        hey mipolitic,how many innocent Iraqi's and Afghan's have been killed by your men and women in uniform?Now your gonna give your b.s lecture on how these deaths are acceptable,your side will certainly be vocal but who speaks on behalf of all those innocent souls.maybe Bush an Cheney could give a motivational speech at the Hague during war crimes hearings.to even think that you Americans could be brainwashed by those 2 idiots.

        January 27, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
  10. James

    Assange, hopefully, spends some time in prison somewhere. To me, he is guilty of treason.-

    January 26, 2012 at 6:00 pm | Reply
    • robroy

      So James,whats George W Bush and Dick Cheney guilty of? this should be one of the greatest sob answers of all time.

      January 26, 2012 at 9:52 pm | Reply
      • michaelfury

        http://michaelfury.wordpress.com/2011/05/10/sing-it-out/

        January 27, 2012 at 7:29 am |

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