Pentagon employee tried to access porn sites at work more than 12k times last year

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An employee of the Pentagon’s accounting arm was caught attempting to access pornographic websites at work more than 12,000 times last year, according to an internal department memo.

The investigation, details of which were obtained by theWashington Timesvia a Freedom of Information Act request, found that the man was blocked from accessing porn hundreds of times from October 2013 to May 2014. His name was withheld from the agency's report.

He was then blocked about 3,000 times in both June and July, and more than 6,000 times in August, according to network firewall logs.

The employee, who works for the Pentagon’s Defense Finance Accounting Service (DFAS), told investigators that he had tried to view porn at work because he did not have a personal computer.

The DFAS employee already had an “extensive record of dubious web usage,” according to the report, as he was also subject to an investigation in 2011 over viewing porn on the job.

As many porn sites come with the risk of cyberattacks via malware, the employee’s “extensive history of attempts to access these websites present an increased level of risk to the DFAS computer network,” investigators wrote.

Meanwhile, investigators seeking to understand more in the case found that they could not forensically examine the employee’s hard drive, given an irregularity with the system’s encryption software, the report said.

Tom LaRock, an agency spokesman, said the case is a “one time anomaly” that does not indicate prohibitive access to sensitive agency hard drives, adding that investigators were able to work through the problems.

“They tried to replicate the anomaly and they were unable to do so,” LaRock told the Times. “It didn’t really hinder the investigation. They were able through those firewall logs to substantiate that this guy was attempting to go on a government computer and access these sites.”

LaRock could not say if the employee retained his job after being the subject of two porn-viewing investigations.

The Times noted a few other recent instances in which federal government employees have been busted for attempting to view porn while on the clock.

In July, a Federal Communications Commission employee spent as many as eight hours a week viewing porn at work. Meanwhile, a Treasury Department employee accessed more than 13,000 porn images in six weeks, and a General Services Administration employee said that boredom encouraged him to look at porn and dating sites while on the job.