A trickle of files allegedly stolen from the CIA director's hacked AOL account posted on WikiLeaks Wednesday predate his recent government service and do not involve official agency business, a CIA official said.
The six documents published on the website date from 2007 and 2008, and include an application for a security clearance to handle classified information. CIA head John Brennan worked in the private sector between 2005 until January 2009.
The personal details published Wednesday are of a sensitive nature -- the contact information of neighbors and friends, for instance. But when asked if Brennan was using his personal email account to conduct official CIA business, an agency official told Nextgov, "absolutely not."
The WikiLeaks site states that more documents from one of the director’s nongovernment email accounts will be released over the coming days.
“Brennan used the account occasionally for several intelligence related projects,” the site claims.
After initially retiring from the CIA in 2005, Brennan founded an intelligence consultancy called The Analysis Corp. Brennan, a Barack Obama donor, served on the future president's transition team in 2008.
One leaked 2007 document contains advice for the next elected president on U.S.-Iran relations. Brennan returned to the federal government in early 2009, as assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism.
Most of the fields in the 47-page application called a Standard Form 86 are blank. But there are a significant number of personal details, such as the Social Security numbers of Brennan and his wife, as well as names and contact details of close acquaintances. Chinese cyberspies allegedly stole from the Office of Personnel Management similar applications listing the Social Security numbers of 21.5 million people.
In a statement, CIA spokesman Dean Boyd described "the hacking of the Brennan family account" as a "crime."
"There is no indication that any the documents released thus far are classified," he said. "They appear to be documents that a private citizen with national security interests and expertise would be expected to possess.”
Teenagers who claim to have breached Brennan’s personal AOL account first publicized their break-in earlier this week, by posting file screenshots on Twitter, according to the New York Post, which broke the story.