In an inadvertent security breach, a document that detailed information on nuclear sites was posted on the Government Printing Office's (GPO) website.
The document, which was more than 260 pages long, included maps showing the locations of stockpiles of fuel for nuclear weapons. It was a “compilation of hundreds of U.S. nuclear sites and activities that were to be declared to the International Atomic Energy Agency by the United States,” Steven Aftergood, senior research analyst at the Federation of American Scientists, wrote in a blog post on Monday.
In a story from the Associated Press, an anonymous Dept. of Energy official was quoted as saying that “none of the sites on the list were directly part of the government's nuclear weapons infrastructure.”
The document had been sent to Congress last month by President Obama, who said in an accompanying letter that “the enclosed declaration is ‘Highly Confidential Safeguards Sensitive.'” The letter also said that the United States regarded the information as “Sensitive but Unclassified.”
“But sensitive or not, the draft declaration was promptly published by the Government Printing Office,” Aftergood wrote.
Gary Somerset, a spokesman for the Government Printing Office, told SCMagazineUS.com in an email that, “House Document 111-37 [which contained the information] was received by GPO in the normal process and produced under routine operating procedures.”
The GPO acted promptly once the nature of the document became known, Somerset said.
“Upon being informed about the potential sensitive nature of the attachment in this document, the Public Printer of the United States removed it from GPO's website pending further review,” the GPO's Somerset said.
Then, after consulting with the White House and Congress, it was determined that the document including the sensitive attachment should be removed from the website for good, according to Somerset.