Problems Protecting Classified Information at Port Hueneme
An article in the Ventura County Star reports that Port Hueneme Navy officials didn’t trust a security manager to keep classified information safe. The security manager for the Naval Facilities Engineering Service Center at Port Hueneme in 2008 was gone after 10 months on the job and put on administrative leave without pay.
The security manager, Gary Bigger, maintains security violations occurred at the base for years and is being made a scapegoat. Biggers said he was trained for the security manager position for two weeks.
An official 2008 Navy report related to his case revealed a list of security lapses and recommended that Biggers and other employees be stripped of their security clearances.
A twist in the story…
In May 2008, Biggers and his lawyer, Jack Futoran of Ventura, received a letter explaining why officials at the center were going to ask higher-ups to never allow Biggers to have access to military secrets.
The letter arrived in a package that also contained the investigative report. Futoran said he was surprised to also see, with the report, some photocopied documents marked “Top Secret” and “Secret.”
“These people deal with some extremely sensitive stuff,” Futoran said. “I immediately closed that (document),” and he told Biggers, “You can’t have this. I can’t have this.”
Port Hueneme is primarily an engineering, maintenance and construction base for various Navy functions. The Naval Construction Battalion Center at Port Hueneme is home to the Pacific coast “SeaBees”, the wartime engineering and building force.
Did I read that right? The Navy sent a package to a guy, explaining that they couldn’t trust him with Secret/Top Secret information and backed it up by including documents that were Secret/Top Secret?
“Gary Bigger, maintains security violations occurred at the base for years…” And still going on, it seems.
“Problems” is a nice euphemism for “horrifying, potentially catastrophic nightmare situation”. I highly encourage everyone to read the whole report; once you get over the security implications it’s a real hoot. These people should be in jail, or at least a six-month, 23-hour course about locking safes.