Secret Service in Crisis Following Breaches
- By Sydny Shepard
- Dec 04, 2015
A congressional committee released a report in December detailing several previously undisclosed lapses in security by the United States Secret Service, finding the agency "in crisis" after a year-long investigation.
During the past 10 years, the bipartisan report from the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee found, there have been 143 security breaches and attempted security breaches at secured facilities.
The Secret Service has been under intense scrutiny following the 2012 prostitution scandal in Cartagena, Colombia, that was made public. But that was only the first of several high-profile mishaps the organization has faced. Breaches at the White House have led officials to believe the president is in jeopardy.
One of the major problems with the Secret Service, according the report, is staffing levels are down and moral is "critically low" within the agency. Several new revelations were revealed in the report, including emails between two agents in April 2012 with colorful language depicting "the brazen attitude of those engaged in misconduct" surrounding the Colombia trip.
The report also exposed how a man posed as a congressman at an awards dinner and ended up having a conversation with President Obama. The report went on to talk about how a woman walked backstage without being properly screened at a gala dinner where Obama was a guest.
Those on the reporting committee are concerned with how the Secret Service will move forward from these public downfalls. They suggested restoring staffing to required levels and conducting an inter-agency review to see what non-essential missions the agency might be able to shed.
Sydny Shepard is the Executive Editor of Campus Security & Life Safety.