The inspiration for the bill, said Meadows in a release, came from Inspector General reports on the Environmental Protection Agency. The IG found multiple cases of EPA employees working hard at watching porn.
“One EPA employee was viewing as much as 6 hours of pornography a day in his office,” said Meadows. “The same federal employee was found to have downloaded as many as 7,000 pornographic files onto his government computer.”
Another IG report detailed one employee who pleaded guilty to using his EPA email account to access an Internet site with child pornography.
Meadows, the chair of the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Government Operations, noted most agencies already have specific rules to prevent this behavior from happening. But still, “It continues to take place. There is absolutely no excuse for federal employees to be viewing and downloading pornographic materials on the taxpayers’ dime,” he said.
On top of the damage a co-worker who watches porn at work does to office morale, it’s a safety issue.
“Downloading these files, which are often ridden with viruses and malware, poses a cybersecurity threat at our federal agencies,” said Meadows.