Gov. Sarah Palin maintained a private e-mail account that she used to communicate with a small circle of staff members outside the state government's secure official e-mail system, according to the Wasilla company that established the site.
The account was separate from the Yahoo e-mail address that was abruptly abandoned by the McCain campaign on Sept. 17, the day hackers penetrated the account and posted pages from it on the Internet. Palin had routinely used her Yahoo address for state business.
Quentin Algood, the owner of ITS Alaska, said a discreet e-mail system was created from an old campaign account, with access confined to "a group of people, her closest confidants and co-workers and advisers and the person she sleeps with."