A Department of Homeland Security (DHS) leader faces an ethics complaint over a social media post, according to a watchdog group.
Jon Easterly, director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency at the DHS, tweeted a promotion for a book called "Tracers in the Dark" in violation of federal policy.
#EXCLUSIVE: Top Biden DHS official faces ethics complaint over potentially illegal @Twitter posthttps://t.co/R3E4MSyiAT
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) December 6, 2022
"Now, the DHS should investigate Easterly for possibly 'violating' ethics rules since federal officials are barred from endorsing 'any product, service, or enterprise' through their official' position or title,' alleged Protect the Public's Trust in a Tuesday complaint to the agency," according to the Washington Examiner.
"PPT Director Michael Chamberlain told the Washington Examiner that 'you don't have to be a marketing genius' to see how Greenberg could reap the benefits of a book 'endorsement' from a government agency or powerful government official like Easterly," it added.
Easterly actually deleted three tweets after CISA was asked about an endorsement ban in 5 CFR § 2635.702(c): https://t.co/Bh6DgkFA1n https://t.co/gi1N4ilKMS
— Aaron Schaffer (@aaronjschaffer) December 6, 2022
"Director Easterly is committed to strictly adhering to the ethics rules that apply to federal officials," CISA spokesperson Michael Feldman said in a statement to the Washington Post.
"She has removed several tweets in order to ensure compliance with those rules and to avoid the appearance of any inconsistency," it added.
From Playbook: Jen Easterly, the director of CISA, deleted a tweet on Tuesday raving about Wired journalist Andy Greenberg’s “Tracers in the Dark” after I asked CISA why she had tweeted it given that it was an apparent violation of government ethics rules. https://t.co/XfAr3bXowy pic.twitter.com/Ej9kVQSfRd
— Daniel Lippman (@dlippman) November 30, 2022
"Jen Easterly, the director of DHS' Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, deleted a tweet on Tuesday afternoon raving about Wired journalist Andy Greenberg's "Tracers in the Dark: The Global Hunt for the Crime Lords of Cryptocurrency" after our Daniel Lippman asked CISA why she had tweeted it given that it was an apparent violation of government ethics rules," Politico added.
The AP's @fbajak writes that TRACERS IN THE DARK "sketches the evolution of a wholly new discipline in a surprisingly lively real-life police procedural" that "deftly teases out technical detail without slowing the narrative." https://t.co/0P0EDjBa8X Thank you Frank!
— Andy Greenberg (email@example.com) (@a_greenberg) December 5, 2022
The book, focused on cryptocurrency, comes at a time when the crypto market has dropped and become a political issue following the involvement of a major cryptocurrency leader as a top Democrat donor during the midterms.
The title is not political, but the tweet about it certainly has become fodder for political discussion.
The Biden official involved should have known better and now faces concerns about her leadership.