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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

"A Serious Breach"

Michael S. Schmidt reports at The New York Times:
Hillary Rodham Clinton exclusively used a personal email account to conduct government business as secretary of state, State Department officials said, and may have violated federal requirements that officials’ correspondence be retained as part of the agency’s record.
Mrs. Clinton did not have a government email address during her four-year tenure at the State Department. Her aides took no actions to have her personal emails preserved on department servers at the time, as required by the Federal Records Act.
It was only two months ago, in response to a new State Department effort to comply with federal record-keeping practices, that Mrs. Clinton’s advisers reviewed tens of thousands of pages of her personal emails and decided which ones to turn over to the State Department. All told, 55,000 pages of emails were given to the department. Mrs. Clinton stepped down from the secretary’s post in early 2013.
Her expansive use of the private account was alarming to current and former National Archives and Records Administration officials and government watchdogs, who called it a serious breach.
“It is very difficult to conceive of a scenario — short of nuclear winter — where an agency would be justified in allowing its cabinet-level head officer to solely use a private email communications channel for the conduct of government business,” said Jason R. Baron, a lawyer at Drinker Biddle & Reath who is a former director of litigation at the National Archives and Records Administration.
...
[Nick] Merrill, the spokesman for Mrs. Clinton, declined to detail why she had chosen to conduct State Department business from her personal account. He said that because Mrs. Clinton had been sending emails to other State Department officials at their government accounts, she had “every expectation they would be retained.” He did not address emails that Mrs. Clinton may have sent to foreign leaders, people in the private sector or government officials outside the State Department.
Ken Westin writes at Tripwire:
Not only would such an activity circumvent record retainment requirements, but also security requirements. For someone as high up as Hillary Clinton to be using a private email address for official government business, it raises a number of security concerns. This is shadow IT at a grand scale. With no visibility into how the Clinton’s emails were being secured it would be impossible for the government to ensure the communications were not compromised by espionage.
According to the Washington Post that the worst scenario may have come true when hacker “Guccifer” reportedly released several emails pertaining to Benghazi which appear to be between Sidney Blumenthal and Hillary Clinton at the “clintonemail.com” domain. The domain was registered January 2009 through Network Solutions.