Infographic: How Much Does the Government Pay to Keep Its Secrets?
Every year, the Information Security Oversight Office reports to the President the estimated costs of securing the nation's classified information. Expenditures can include anything from salaries and security clearances for personnel accessing the sensitive documents to computer equipment and training programs for government employees. In 2011, that total cost was nearly $11.4 billion—more than double the budget from just ten years ago.
Some argue that in today's digital era, the leaking of private documents is increasingly easy, so the program warrants greater protection. Others believe the government is classifying too much information—some of it unnecessarily shrouded. Regardless, there's no denying that the cost of keeping government secrets is ballooning, and taxpayers are footing the bill.