Defense Secretary Ash Carter used his personal email account to conduct some of his professional correspondence during his first months on the job earlier this year, the Pentagon admitted late Wednesday.
Carter’s use of the personal account was first reported by The New York Times, which said that he had been confronted about his email habits by White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough this past May, three months after Carter took office as defense secretary.
Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook released a statement saying that Carter believes his use of personal email for work-related business was a mistake. Cook declined to say whether it was a violation of Pentagon email policies. Cook also said Carter stopped the practice, but Cook did not say when.
Carter also acknowledged the move was a mistake in an interview with CBS’ “This Morning” on Thursday. He said he occasionally used his iPhone to send messages to immediate staff, but stressed no classified information was involved.