The Financial Times reported Monday that over ten thousand private messages sent between Bloomberg’s financial terminals were intentionally leaked online by Bloomberg L.P. and then left online accidentally.
This is the second scandal to hit Bloomberg L.P., the company largely responsible for New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s fortune, in a week.
Goldman Sachs complained in April to Bloomberg L.P. that Bloomberg journalists were accessing information from financial terminals. Bloomberg’s editor-in-chief Matthew Winkler admitted on Monday to the activity, acknowledging it has been standard practice at the organization: “The recent complaints go to practices that are almost as old as Bloomberg News … some reporters have used the terminal to obtain … facts such as log-on information.”
Winkler admitted that this access included a user’s login history and when a user used specific high-level functions.
Bloomberg has refused recently to answer questions about the extent of his involvement with Bloomberg L.P., walking away from a lectern when confronted by repeated questions.
“The mayor talks regularly to senior officials of Bloomberg L.P., about topics ranging from new data terminal sales to expansion into new market,” according to the New York Times in 2007. “He personally recruited a spokeswoman for the company and keeps a Bloomberg computer terminal on his desk at City Hall.”
Bloomberg’s company now faces separate investigations from the Bank of Japan, the European Central Bank, and the Bundesbank, as well as inquiries from the Federal Reserve and Treasury.
While Bloomberg’s company made it standard practice for journalists to access client information, the mayor has sought to limit the citizens of New York from buying cigarettes. The mayor has made habit of trying to restrict the behavior of his citizens, seeking to ban Styrofoam, trans fats, large sodas, and New York City traffic congestion.