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In an initiative aimed at rooting out future leakers and other security violators, President Barack Obama has ordered federal employees to report suspicious actions of their colleagues based on behavioral profiling techniques that are not scientifically proven to work, according to experts and government documents.

Linchpin for Obama’s plan to predict future leakers unproven
McClatchy News Service
July 10, 2013

The techniques are a key pillar of the Insider Threat Program, an unprecedented government-wide crackdown under which millions of federal bureaucrats and contractors must watch out for “high-risk persons or behaviors” among co-workers. Those who fail to report them could face penalties, including criminal charges.

Linchpin for Obama’s plan to predict future leakers unproven
McClatchy News Service
July 10, 2013

Thoughtcrime was not a thing that could be concealed for ever. You might dodge successfully for a while, even for years, but sooner or later they were bound to get you.

1984
George Orwell
1948

The order covers virtually every federal department and agency . . . While the Insider Threat Program mandates that the nearly 5 million federal workers and contractors with clearances undergo training in recognizing suspicious behavior indicators, it allows individual departments and agencies to extend the requirement to their entire workforces.

Linchpin for Obama’s plan to predict future leakers unproven
McClatchy News Service
July 10, 2013

This hall, with its fifty workers or thereabouts, was only one sub-section, a single cell, as it were, in the huge complexity of the Records Department. Beyond, above, below, were other swarms of workers engaged in an unimaginable multitude of jobs.

1984
George Orwell
1948

Federal employees and contractors are asked to pay particular attention to the lifestyles, attitudes and behaviors—like financial troubles, odd working hours or unexplained travel—of co-workers as a way to predict whether they might do “harm to the United States.”

Linchpin for Obama’s plan to predict future leakers unproven
McClatchy News Service
July 10, 2013

Some nosing zealot in the Ministry might start wondering why he had been writing during the lunch interval, why he had used an old-fashioned pen, WHAT he had been writing—and then drop a hint in the appropriate quarter.

1984
George Orwell
1948

Investigations also can be triggered when “suspicious user behavior” is detected by computer network monitoring and reported to “insider threat personnel."

Linchpin for Obama’s plan to predict future leakers unproven
McClatchy News Service
July 10, 2013

How often, or on what system, the Thought Police plugged in on any individual wire was guesswork. It was even conceivable that they watched everybody all the time. But at any rate they could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to.

1984
George Orwell
1948

Although agencies and departments are still setting up their programs, some employees already are being urged to watch co-workers for “indicators” that include stress, divorce and financial problems.

Linchpin for Obama’s plan to predict future leakers unproven
McClatchy News Service
July 10, 2013

The smallest thing could give you away. A nervous tic, an unconscious look of anxiety, a habit of muttering to yourself—anything that carried with it the suggestion of abnormality, of having something to hide . . . To dissemble your feelings, to control your face, to do what everyone else was doing, was an instinctive reaction.

1984
George Orwell
1948

Managers of special insider threat offices will have “regular, timely, and, if possible, electronic, access” to employees’ personnel, payroll, disciplinary and “personal contact” files, as well as records of their use of classified and unclassified computer networks, polygraph results, travel reports and financial disclosure forms.

Linchpin for Obama’s plan to predict future leakers unproven
McClatchy News Service
July 10, 2013

A Party member lives from birth to death under the eye of the Thought Police. Even when he is alone he can never be sure that he is alone . . . he can be inspected without warning and without knowing that he is being inspected.

1984
George Orwell
1948

Originally posted to billmon on Wed Jul 10, 2013 at 08:38 PM PDT.

Also republished by The First and The Fourth.

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