Army General Keith Alexander.
New financial disclosure documents released this month by the National Security Agency (NSA) show that Keith Alexander, who served as its director from August 2005 until March 2014, had thousands of dollars of investments during his tenure in a handful of technology firms.
Each year disclosed has a checked box next to this statement: “Reported financial interests or affiliations are unrelated to assigned or prospective duties, and no conflicts appear to exist.”
Alexander repeatedly made the public case that the American public is at “greater risk” from a terrorist attack in the wake of the Snowden disclosures. Statements such as those could have a positive impact on the companies he was invested in, which could have eventually helped his personal bottom line.
The NSA did not immediately respond to Ars requests for further comment.
The documents were obtained and published Friday by Vice as the result of a Freedom of Information Act request and subsequent lawsuit against the NSA brought by Vice reporter Jason Leopold.
The 60 released pages, which cover a period from 2008 through 2013, document that as of 2008, Alexander had as much as $50,000 invested in Synchronoss, a cloud storage firm. Synchronoss provides services to major mobile phone providers, including AT&T, Verizon and others.
He also had as much as $15,000 invested in Datascension, a “data gathering and research company.” Public trades in the firm were suspended by the Securities and Exchange Commission in August 2014 due to “a lack of current and accurate information” about it.
Pericom, a semiconductor company that also has made hardware for “DVR solutions for the CCTV security and surveillance markets,” also appears in his portfolio, with investments up to $15,000 appearing as of 2008.
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Former NSA director had thousands personally invested in obscure tech firms