‘Collective Panic’ Spreads Among Federal Employees Over OPM Hack

The first reports of the massive penetration of Office of Personnel Management files and security clearance applications — apparently by Chinese hackers most likely working for, or with, that country’s military intelligence apparatus — included grumbles from the affected employees that the administration didn’t handle the situation very well.

Those early grumbles were but the snap responses of a few individual employees the media chose at random. Now that the millions of people potentially affected by the hack have been given a few days to digest the news and consider the Administration’s response, their attitude has soured into what government employees described to BuzzFeed as “collective panic.”

It is interesting that the mainstream press has not exerted itself to collect a wide range of responses. Usually they’re all about the human-interest angle. Every news organization could easily talk to dozens, or hundreds, of federal employees and produce a piece like BuzzFeed’s, but they have not.

Tellingly, only former government employees jeopardized by the hack were willing to go on the record with BuzzFeed. Current employees insisted on remaining anonymous.

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