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Government Executive Editor in Chief Tom Shoop, along with other editors and staff correspondents, look at the federal bureaucracy from the outside in.

Stay Away from WikiLeaks

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The Obama administration is warning federal employees that just because WikiLeaks has posted classified federal information online, that doesn't mean it's OK to access such information on federal computers.

The Washington Post's Ed O'Keefe reports that late Friday, the Office of Management and Budget sent a memo to general counsel offices across government, saying "Classified information, whether or not already posted on public Web sites or disclosed to the media, remains classified, and must be treated as such by federal employees and contractors, until it is declassified by an appropriate U.S. government authority."

Even people who aren't yet working for government are being cautioned against paying too much attention to the WikiLeaks material. The Arabist website reported last week that a State Department official had contacted the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs to warn students that if they want to work for the U.S. government someday, they should not post links to the information online or comment about it on social media sites. Given that the cables and other leaked material are still viewed as classified, having engaged in such activity might make it difficult for a would-be diplomat to pass a background check.

Tom Shoop is vice president and editor in chief at Government Executive Media Group, where he oversees both print and online editorial operations. He started as associate editor of Government Executive magazine in 1989; launched the company’s flagship website, GovExec.com, in 1996; and was named editor in chief in 2007.

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