â€œMust be the Chinese!â€ http://t.co/7jYraHFMMv Hillary Clintonâ€™s email scandal just keeps growing.— Speaker John Boehner (@SpeakerBoehner) October 2, 2015
In April 2014, almost a year to the day before her exclusive use of personal email for government business was revealed as a result of the House Select Committee on Benghazi’s investigation, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told a college crowd that “China and Russia …. were going after the personal emails of people who worked in the State Department.”
After her email scandal erupted, her tune changed. Asked by CNN last month if it was possible that her private server was hacked by the Russians or the Chinese, Clinton dismissed the idea. “There’s no evidence of that,” she laughed.
Apparently, she really does think it’s funny. In one 2011 email released by the State Department thanks to a court order, Clinton joked that the Chinese must have hacked her email, writing of a technical glitch that it “Must be the Chinese!”
According to a new Associated Press report, however, she should have blamed the Russians:
Russia-linked hackers tried at least five times to pry into Hillary Rodham Clinton's private email account while she was secretary of state, emails released Wednesday show. It is unclear if she clicked on any attachments and exposed her account. …
Security researchers who analyzed the malicious software in September 2011 said that infected computers would transmit information from victims to at least three server computers overseas, including one in Russia. …
The phishing attempts highlight the risk of Clinton's unsecure email being pried open by foreign intelligence agencies[.]
As Politico reported, “Cyber experts [say] that the fact the phishing email got through, not once but multiple times, demonstrates vulnerabilities in the server’s security, further suggesting Clinton’s email was less secure than if she’d used a government account.”
In another 2011 email chain, Clinton’s chief of staff Cheryl Mills said she was the victim of a hacking attempt. Mills “emailed classified information about the government in Congo to a staffer at the Clinton Foundation in 2012,” according to The Washington Free Beacon.
The Clinton email batch released by the State Department this week doubled the number of those that are classified to “more than 400, with three of the 215 newly classified documents marked as SECRET[.]”
Cybersecurity and intelligence experts aren’t amused:
- As Bloomberg’s Eli Lake and Josh Rogin reported a month ago, “Outside experts assume Clinton's server was hacked.”
- Admiral Mike Rogers, the Director of the National Security Agency (NSA), testified to Congress last week that, if the foreign minister of another country was conducting official government business on a private server, “that represents [an] opportunity” for U.S. spies.
- Asked about Clinton’s email in May, former Deputy CIA Director Michael Morell said that “foreign intelligence services, the good ones, have everything on any unclassified network that the government uses.”
- Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, President Obama’s former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, said in April that the odds foreign countries hacked into Clinton’s server were “Very high. Likely. … They’re very good at it. China, Russia, Iran, potentially the North Koreans.” Last month, Flynn said President Obama should “immediately suspend” Clinton’s security clearance. He has not.
- Wired explained in March “Why Clinton’s private email server was such a security fail,” and that despite Clinton’s claims, “she can’t know” whether it was secure.
- “‘It is almost certain that at least some of the emails hosted at clintonemails.com were intercepted,’ independent security expert and developer Nic Cubrilovic told Gawker.”
- “‘There have been times when I've hacked into a customer's server, collected data, and gotten out, and the customer never had any indication that their system had been compromised,’ ethical hacker David Chronister of Parameter Security told Business Insider.”
Yesterday, the FBI confirmed for the first time that it is investigating the security of Clinton’s private email server.