On Thursday, Governor Kristi Noem urged investigations into the leaking of nearly 2,000 Social Security numbers by the January 6th Committee. She pushed Attorney General Merrick Garland to investigate the apparent violation of federal law. She also requested that the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability and the House Ethics Committee investigate the breach.
The leaked Social Security numbers included those of Governor Noem, Bryon Noem, Kassidy Peters, Kyle Peters, Kennedy Noem, and Booker Noem.
“This callous, unacceptable handling of our most sensitive information could have permanent, widespread damage to the lives of my kids and my grandkids, as well as the families of the many other individuals impacted,” Governor Noem writes in both letters.
The leak of these Social Security numbers is a violation of the Privacy Act of 1974, which provides that “[no] agency shall disclose any record which is contained in a system of records by any means of communication to any person, or to another agency, except pursuant to a written request by, or with the prior written consent of, the individual to whom the record pertains[.]” 5 U.S.C. § 552a(b).
The leak impacted several public figures, including Governor Greg Abbott, Governor Henry McMaster, former U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson, and former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar.
“I am glad of your recent decision to appoint a Special Counsel to probe the apparent mishandling of confidential information by President Joseph R. Biden. This action indicates an increased willingness to investigate violations of law, regardless of the political affiliation of the lawbreaker. I hope that you will do the right thing and investigate this apparent violation of federal law,” Governor Noem concluded in her letter to Attorney General Garland.
You can find the letter to Attorney General Garland here. You can find the letter to the House of Representatives here.