What: When the U.S. economy teetered on the brink of collapse, some of our top financial guardians at the Securities and Exchange Commission spent much of their working hours surfing for Internet pornography. Seventeen of the gawkers were SEC senior staffers earning salaries of up to $222,418.
Who: One accountant tried to access raunchy sites 16,000 times in a single month and eventually figured out how to bypass the SEC’s internal smut filter by using Google. He received a two-week suspension. A senior attorney spent up to eight hours a day looking at pornography. When his government computer ran out of hard drive space, he burned files onto DVDs that he kept boxed in his office. When caught, he agreed to resign.
How we know: The XXX-rated distractions were uncovered in probes of 33 SEC employees who logged onto hardcore websites during the past five years. The investigation by the SEC inspector general was requested by Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa.