In early March, WikiLeaks released thousands of classified documents to the public in what's considered one of the worst breaches of security in CIA history.
Known as “Vault 7,” the top-secret document dump revealed the hacking capabilities of the CIA, including the ability to turn household items like smart TVs into recording devices.
According to a CBS News report from Wednesday night, the intelligence agency has not taken that breach lightly, and has launched a full-scale manhunt in order to find the “traitor inside the Central Intelligence Agency.”
The manhunt — a joint investigation by the CIA and FBI — is said to already be underway, and is focusing strictly on individuals inside the Central Intelligence Agency.
As CBS News reports:
Sources familiar with the investigation say it is looking for an insider — either a CIA employee or contractor — who had physical access to the material. The agency has not said publicly when the material was taken or how it was stolen.
Much of the material was classified and stored in a highly secure section of the intelligence agency, but sources say hundreds of people would have had access to the material. Investigators are going through those names.
News of the internal manhunt comes on the heels of some powerful rhetoric from new CIA Director Mike Pompeo:
In his first public address as CIA director — delivered at D.C.'s Center for Strategic and International Studies — Pompeo made it clear exactly how much of a threat he considers WikiLeaks:
"WikiLeaks walks like a hostile intelligence service and talks like a hostile intelligence service.
It has encouraged its followers to find jobs at CIA in order to obtain intelligence ... and it overwhelmingly focuses on the United States, while seeking support from anti-democratic countries and organizations."
The director also singled out WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in his April 13 speech, calling him a “fraud” without a “moral compass” and a “narcissist who has created nothing of value.”
As news of this CIA-FBI investigation suggests, it seems that Pompeo and his agency aren't limiting their fight against WikiLeaks' influence to mere wordplay.