The general who headed America’s biggest spy agency was profiting off stock trades involving an obscure New Jersey technology company that had a lucrative contract with one of the intelligence community’s most important sources of global phone and Internet traffic.
AT&T had a deal with Synchronoss Technologies Inc., of Bridgewater, to provide transaction management technology to activate all new Apple iPhones onto what was then an exclusive carrier network.
According to the retired Army general’s financial-disclosure forms, while Gen. Keith Alexander was running the National Security Agency in 2008, he bought and sold tens of thousands of dollars in stock in a company called Synchronoss Technologies Inc., based in Bridgewater Township.
Synchronoss software manages processes associated with activating and synchronizing the devices of 3 billion-plus mobile subscribers around the world connected with the largest service providers.
The company’s clients include AT&T Inc., Verizon Wireless, Vodafone, Cablevision, Charter Communications, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Apple, Microsoft, and Samsung.
Alexander, and his deputy John C. Inglis, left the NSA on October 16, 2013, after four months of spying revelations spawned by press-leaks made by whistle-blower Edward Snowden.
Alexander’s reaction the attacks on 9/11 was to order his intercept operators at the Army Intelligence and Security Command, where he was in charge of 10,700 spies and eavesdroppers worldwide, to monitor email and phone calls of American citizens who were unrelated to terrorist threats.
In 2005, after commanding units responsible for Abu Ghraib torture and prisoner abuse in Baghdad, Iraq, Alexander was named director of the National Security Agency by Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld.
Alexander was confirmed by the U.S. Senate for appointment to the rank of four-star general in May 2010 and he took over United States Cyber Command.
Following his retirement, Alexander launched the consulting firm IronNet Cybersecurity Inc., reportedly helping banks and other firms protect their computer networks in exchange for retainers of up to $1 million a month.
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