Via Fox News:
Former Hillary Clinton IT specialist Bryan Pagliano, a key witness in the email probe who struck an immunity deal with the Justice Department, has told the FBI a range of details about how her personal email system was set up, according to an intelligence source close to the case who called him a “devastating witness.”
The source said Pagliano told the FBI who had access to the former secretary of state’s system – as well as when – and what devices were used, amounting to a roadmap for investigators.
“Bryan Pagliano is a devastating witness and, as the webmaster, knows exactly who had access to [Clinton’s] computer and devices at specific times. His importance to this case cannot be over-emphasized,” the intelligence source said.
Highly classified Hillary Clinton emails that the intelligence community and State Department recently deemed too damaging to national security to release contain “operational intelligence” – and their presence on the unsecure, personal email system jeopardized “sources, methods and lives,” a U.S. government official who has reviewed the documents told Fox News.
The official, who was not authorized to speak on the record and was limited in discussing the contents because of their highly classified nature, was referring to the 22 “TOP SECRET” emails that the State Department announced Friday it could not release in any form, even with entire sections redacted.
The announcement fueled criticism of Clinton’s handling of highly sensitive information while secretary of state, even as the Clinton campaign continued to downplay the matter as the product of an interagency dispute over classification. But the U.S. government official’s description provides confirmation that the emails contained closely held government secrets. “Operational intelligence” can be real-time information about intelligence collection, sources and the movement of assets.
The official emphasized that the “TOP SECRET” documents were sent over an extended period of time – from shortly after the server’s 2009 installation until early 2013 when Clinton stepped down as secretary of state.
Separately, Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Kan., who sits on the House intelligence committee, said the former secretary of state, senator, and Yale-trained lawyer had to know what she was dealing with.
“There is no way that someone, a senior government official who has been handling classified information for a good chunk of their adult life, could not have known that this information ought to be classified, whether it was marked or not,” he said. “Anyone with the capacity to read and an understanding of American national security, an 8th grade reading level or above, would understand that the release of this information or the potential breach of a non-secure system presented risk to American national security.”
Pompeo also suggested the military and intelligence communities have had to change operations, because the Clinton server could have been compromised by a third party.
“Anytime our national security team determines that there’s a potential breach, that is information that might potentially have fallen into the hands of the Iranians, or the Russians, or the Chinese, or just hackers, that they begin to operate in a manner that assumes that information has in fact gotten out,” Pompeo said.
On ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday, one day before the Iowa caucuses, Clinton claimed ignorance on the sensitivity of the materials and stressed that they weren’t marked.
“There is no classified marked information on those emails sent or received by me,” she said, adding that “Republicans are going to continue to use it [to] beat up on me.”
Clinton was pressed in the same ABC interview on her signed 2009 non-disclosure agreement which acknowledged that markings are irrelevant, undercutting her central explanation. The agreement states “classified information is marked or unmarked… including oral communications.”
Clinton pointed to her aides, saying: “When you receive information, of course, there has to be some markings, some indication that someone down the chain had thought that this was classified and that was not the case.”
But according to national security legal experts, security clearance holders are required to speak up when classified information is not in secure channels.
“Everybody who has a security clearance has an individual obligation to protect the information,” said national security attorney Edward MacMahon Jr., who represented former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling in the high-profile leak investigation regarding a New York Times reporter. “Just because somebody sends it to you… you can’t just turn a blind eye and pretend it never happened and pretend it’s unclassified information.”
These rules, known as the Code of Federal Regulations, apply to U.S. government employees with security clearances and state there is an obligation to report any possible breach by both the sender and the receiver of the information. The rules state: “Any person who has knowledge that classified information has been or may have been lost, possibly compromised or disclosed to an unauthorized person shall immediately report the circumstances to an official designated for this purpose.”
The Clinton campaign is now calling for the 22 “TOP SECRET” emails to be released, but this is not entirely the State Department’s call since the intelligence came from other agencies, which have final say on classification and handling.
“The State Department has no authority to release those emails and I do think that Secretary Clinton most assuredly knows that,” Pompeo said.
Meanwhile, the release of other emails has revealed more about the high-level exchange of classified information on personal accounts. Among the latest batch of emails released by the State Department is an exchange between Clinton and then-Sen. John Kerry, now secretary of state. Sections are fully redacted, citing classified information – and both Kerry and Clinton were using unsecured, personal accounts.
Further, a 2009 email released to Judicial Watch after a federal lawsuit – and first reported by Fox News – suggests the State Department ‘s senior manager Patrick Kennedy was trying to make it easier for Clinton to check her personal email at work, writing to Clinton aide Cheryl Mills a “stand-alone separate network PC is… [one] great idea.”
“The emails show that the top administrator at the State Department, Patrick Kennedy, who is still there overseeing the response to all the inquiries about Hillary Clinton, was in on Hillary Clinton’s separate email network and system from the get-go,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said.
Kennedy is expected to testify this month before the Republican-led Benghazi Select Committee.
Hillary Clinton was finally asked on Sunday about a non-disclosure agreement she signed in Jan. 2009 which completely undermines the defense she uses to downplay the existence of classified information on her private email server. But as is often the case with the Democratic presidential candidate, she dodged the question and gave an inconsistent answer.
“You know, you’ve said many times that the emails were not marked classified,” said ABC News “This Week” host George Stephanopoulos.
“But the non-disclosure agreement you signed as secretary of state said that that really is not that relevant,” he continued.
He was referring to the “Classified Information Nondisclosure Agreement” – or Standard Form 312 – that Clinton signed on Jan. 22, 2009, a day after taking over as secretary of state.
“It says classified information is marked or unmarked classified and that all of your training to treat all of that sensitively and should know the difference,” said Stephanopoulos, describing the document.
Clinton responded to Stephanopoulos but did not address the meat of his question. In fact, she appeared to reject the language of the SF-312, saying that “there has to be some markings” on classified information.
“I take classified information very seriously,” Clinton said. “You know, you can’t get information off the classified system in the State Department to put onto an unclassified system, no matter what that system is.”
“We were very specific about that and you – when you receive information, of course, there has to be some markings, some indication that someone down the chain had thought that this was classified and that was not the case.”
However, as the SF-312 makes clear, classified information does not have to be marked as such in order to require being handled as classified information. The document applies not just to physical documents and emails but also to oral communications.
Clinton revised her defense of the classified information on several occasions, as federal agencies release more damaging information about her home-brew email system.
“I did not email any classified material to anyone on my email. There is no classified materials,” she said in March, when news of her personal email account and server first broke.
In July, after the State Department began retroactively classifying many of Clinton’s emails, she revised her claim saying that she was “confident” that she “never sent nor received any information that was classified at the time it was sent or received.”
Days later, she changed her tune again, adopting the now-familiar claim that she did not send or receive information that was “marked” as such. That was after it was reported that the Intelligence Community’s inspector general had found highly classified emails which were classified when originated.
Clinton’s statement to Stephanopoulos about the inability to transfer “information off the classified system in the State Department to put onto an unclassified system” also fails to hold water.
Earlier this week, Fox News reported on a 2013 video showing Wendy Sherman, who served as Clinton’s Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, discussing how State Department officials often used Blackberries during overseas negotiations to send and receive information that “would never be on an unclassified system.”
The number of classified emails contained on Hillary Clinton’s private server, which she assured Americans never contained sensitive information sent or received, now totals nearly 1,000 according to Ed Henry on Tuesday.
“One of the most significant headlines, of course, is that out of this new batch of emails released by the State Department – the largest one yet, nearly 8,000 pages, there are 328 more emails that have now been deemed classified. That brings the total to 999,” Henry said. “Obviously, with more document dumps to come very likely that you’ll have more than 1,000 emails with classified emails in there even though Clinton, you’ll remember, said that there was no classified information on her private server.”
Henry reported on Monday the latest batch of emails only continues the “drip-drip” reminder for Clinton that the private email scandal has not gone away.
“The bigger picture, the broader point here is Hillary Clinton back in March said no classified information on this server and as we continue to see the drip-drip there are indications, of course, that there are dozens of those emails already come out that did have classified information,” Henry said.
Clinton assured the American people that there was no classified information sent or received on her private email server when she first addressed the issue with a press conference from the UN in March. She guaranteed that no sensitive information would be found on her server, and forcefully pushed back against accusations that her email set-up was a national security risk.
Since the finding of classified information on her server, the campaign has taken a new position: Clinton did not send or receive anything marked classified at the time. The revelation of more classified material highlights how much sensitive information passed through the network previously unknown by the State Department.
The ordeal has plagued Clinton’s candidacy and left her with her worst favorability rating ever because a majority of Americans do not believe she is honest or trustworthy.
Following the release of the largest batch of Clinton emails to date, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus released a statement saying,”With the number of emails containing classified information now numbering nearly one thousand, this latest court-ordered release underscores the degree to which Hillary Clinton jeopardized our national security and has tried to mislead the American people.”
The FBI refused to cooperate Monday with a court-ordered inquiry into former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s email server, telling the State Department that they won’t even confirm they are investigating the matter themselves, much less willing to tell the rest of the government what’s going on.
Judge Emmet G. Sullivan had ordered the State Department to talk with the FBI and see what sort of information could be recovered from Mrs. Clinton’s email server, which her lawyer has said she turned over to the Justice Department over the summer.
The FBI’s refusal, however, leaves things muddled.
“At this time, consistent with long-standing Department of Justice and FBI policy, we can neither confirm nor deny the existence of any ongoing investigation, nor are we in a position to provide additional information at this time,” FBI General Counsel James A. Baker wrote in a letter dated Monday – a week after the deadline the Justice Department had set for the FBI to reply.
Judicial Watch, a conservative public interest law firm that is pursuing at least 16 open records cases seeking emails from Mrs. Clinton and her top aides, said at this point it’s not even clear what Mrs. Clinton provided, since all that’s been made public at this point are the former secretary of state’s public comments and some assertions, made through her lawyer, to the State Department.
Judicial Watch is prodding the courts to try to delve more deeply into Mrs. Clinton’s emails, and the group said a number of questions persevere about both Mrs. Clinton and top aides such as Huma Abedin, who did public business on an account tied to the server Mrs. Clinton maintained.
“We still do not know whether the FBI – or any other government agency for that matter – has possession of the email server that was used by Mrs. Clinton and Ms. Abedin to conduct official government business during their four years of employment at the State Department,” Judicial Watch said.
“We also do not know whether the server purportedly in the possession of the FBI – an assumption based on unsworn statements by third parties – is the actual email server that was used by Mrs. Clinton and Ms. Abedin to conduct official government business during their four years of employment at the State Department or whether it is a copy of such an email server. Nor do we know whether any copies of the email server or copies of the records from the email server exist,” the group said in its own court filing Monday afternoon.
Judicial Watch did release more than 50 pages Monday of emails it obtained from Ms. Abedin’s account on Mrs. Clinton’s server, and said it was clear she was talking about “sensitive” topics that shouldn’t have been discussed on an insecure account.
Many of those were details of Mrs. Clinton’s movements overseas, such as hotels she was staying at.
“These emails Judicial Watch forced out through a federal lawsuit show that Huma Abedin used her separate clintonemail.com account to conduct the most sensitive government business, endangering not only her safety but the safety of Hillary Clinton and countless others,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.
He questioned what reason Ms. Abedin – who did maintain an account, email@example.com, on State.gov servers – would have for using the other account for important business. Mrs. Clinton said she kept only one account, the one on the clintonemail.com server, because it was more convenient, but that reasoning does not appear to apply to Ms. Abedin.
The State Department is making all of Mrs. Clinton’s emails public under order of Judge Rudolph Contreras. But the department has said it won’t make all of the emails public from Ms. Abedin or other top Clinton aides Cheryl Mills or Philippe Reines. Instead the department only plans to release those messages specifically requested in open records demands.
Mrs. Clinton turned over about 30,000 email messages in December, while her aides turned over more than 100,000 pages between them, with the final set only being returned, by Ms. Abedin, earlier this month, the department said in court filings.
Without those documents in hand, the State Department has been unable to do full and complete searches in response to subpoenas, congressional inquiries or Freedom of Information Act requests.
The State Department has asked for dozens of cases to be put on hold while it tries to get a single judge to coordinate all of its searches in more than two dozen cases. But the people requesting the records have objected, and say the State Department has nobody to blame but itself.
“The State Department acts as if Ms. Abedin’s and Ms. Mills’ documents fell from the sky on the eve of the State Department’s production deadline, but that is not remotely the case,” Citizens United, one of the plaintiffs who has sued under the FOIA, said in a filing late last week.
Citizens United says the State Department missed its own deadline for producing Ms. Mills’ and Ms. Abedin’s documents.
The Obama administration countered that it went above and beyond its duties under the law by asking Ms. Abedin and Ms. Mills to return their records and then to search them in response to open records requests. The State Department says it’s moving as quickly as possible, but says the sheer number of documents – and the number of requests for them – calls for a stay in most cases.
But of the 26 requests where the State Department has sought to halt proceedings, six have already been denied. Only one has been granted, one was granted in part and denied in part by the same judge, and another is being held in abeyance.
The State Department told one of the federal judges Monday that it’s facing nearly 100 different open records lawsuits – not all of them related to Mrs. Clinton’s email server – that have stretched officials to their limit.
Monday’s FBI letter underscores the tangled situation Mrs. Clinton’s emails have produced. The letter was addressed to Mary McLeod, a lawyer at the Justice Department, which oversees the FBI – and which means, in effect, that the FBI is refusing to talk to its own parent department about the matter.
Mr. Baker pointedly noted in his letter that he was aware the response would be submitted to the court, which would presumably make it public.
Earlier this month the Justice Department, in another pleading, insisted Mrs. Clinton didn’t do anything wrong in being the one who decided which of her messages were official business records that must be returned to the government and which were purely personal and able to be expunged.
Judicial Watch said that raises thorny questions for a department that is supposedly investigating Mrs. Clinton.
Last week Sen. John Cornyn, the second-ranking Republican in the Senate, called for Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch to name a special counsel to oversee the investigation, citing too many potential conflicts of interest.
A special intelligence review of two emails that Hillary Rodham Clinton received as secretary of state on her personal account – including one about North Korea’s nuclear weapons program – has endorsed a finding by the inspector general for the intelligence agencies that the emails contained highly classified information when Mrs. Clinton received them, senior intelligence officials said.
Mrs. Clinton’s presidential campaign and the State Department disputed the inspector general’s finding last month and questioned whether the emails had been overclassified by an arbitrary process. But the special review – by the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency – concluded that the emails were “Top Secret,” the highest classification of government intelligence, when they were sent to Mrs. Clinton in 2009 and 2011.
On Monday, the Clinton campaign disagreed with the conclusion of the intelligence review and noted that agencies within the government often have different views of what should be considered classified.
Mrs. Clinton’s work-related emails from when she was secretary of state are slowly being released by the State Department.
“Our hope remains that these releases continue without being hampered by bureaucratic infighting among the intelligence community, and that the releases continue to be as inclusive and transparent as possible,” said Nick Merrill, a campaign spokesman.
John Kirby, the State Department spokesman, echoed Mr. Merrill.
“Classification is rarely a black and white question, and it is common for the State Department to engage internally and with our interagency partners to arrive at the appropriate decision,” he said in a statement. “Very often both the State Department and the intelligence community acquire information on the same matter through separate channels. Thus, there can be two or more separate reports and not all of them based on classified means. At this time, any conclusion about the classification of the documents in question would be premature.”
The intelligence review is the latest development in continuing reverberations over Mrs. Clinton’s use of only a private email account for her public business when she was secretary of state, which gave her some control over what was made public. She faced criticism when the account became known this year, and after deleting what she said were more than 31,000 personal messages turned over more than 30,000 work-related emails for the State Department to make public.
Mrs. Clinton has said that her emails contained no information that was marked classified – having classified information outside a secure government account is illegal – and that she is fully cooperating with an F.B.I. investigation to determine who at the State Department may have passed highly classified information from secure networks to her personal account. She herself is not a target of the investigation.
I. Charles McCullough III, the inspector general for the intelligence community, found the two emails containing what he determined was “Top Secret” information in the course of reviewing a sampling of 40 of Mrs. Clinton’s work-related emails for potential security breaches.
The senior intelligence officials briefed on the findings of the review spoke on the condition of anonymity because they did not want to jeopardize their access to sensitive information.
President Obama signed an executive order in December 2009 that defined “Top Secret” as information that if disclosed could “reasonably” be expected to cause “exceptionally grave damage to national security.”
In the months after the disclosure, Mrs. Clinton and her campaign were unequivocal in their stance that there was no classified information on it. But after it was revealed in August that the F.B.I. was investigating how classified materials were handled in connection with the account, Mrs. Clinton’s aides began saying that she never sent or received anything that was classified at the time.
Hillary Clinton paid to hide the identity of the people running her private email server, Breitbart News has learned.
Her attempt to hide details about her server has allowed another faceless company access to her classified email information, while doing little to nothing to secure that information from hackers.
Clinton’s private email domain clintonemail.com was initially purchased by Clinton aide Eric Hoteham, who listed the Clintons’ Chappaqua, New York home as the contact address for his purchase. But the domain is actually registered to an Internet company designed to hide the true identity of the people running it.
Clintonemail.com is currently registered to a company called Perfect Privacy, LLC.
The company has a listed address of 12808 Gran Bay Parkway West in Jacksonville, Florida. But don’t try to get someone from “Perfect Privacy” on the phone. The company merely serves to mask its clients’ personal information by providing its own meaningless contact information on official databases.
“Did you know that every time you register a domain name, the law requires that your personal information is added to the public “WHOIS” database, where it becomes instantly available to anyone, anywhere, anytime?,” according to the Perfect Privacy website. “Perfect Privacy eliminates these risks by ensuring that your personal information stays private. By signing up for Perfect Privacy when you register your domain, our information is published in the WHOIS database, instead of yours.”
“We won’t reveal your identity unless required by law or if you breach our Perfect Privacy Service Agreement,” the company explains.
Perfect Privacy, LLC is owned by Network Solutions, which in turn is owned by Web.com. Network Solutions advertises Perfect Privacy as a way to “Keep Your Contact Information Hidden With Private Registration.”
The Jacksonville address listed for Perfect Privacy, LLC is actually just the headquarters for Web.com. It is an unassuming gray building just off Interstate 95.
Breitbart News called a number listed for Network Solutions and, after some on-hold elevator music, an operator confirmed that clintonemail.com is one of the domains that it manages. The company has access to information in the account. But the company does not provide any kind of security for the domain, and instead encourages its clients to buy a standard Norton AntiVirus package like the kind available at retail stores.
“No, we don’t do that,” a Network Solutions operator told Breitbart News when asked if it provides security for its clients. But, the operator, noted, “Our server automatically checks for known SPAM.”
Network Solutions, the operator explained, can identify major hacks and can access and change information related to the email account in the event of a hack. The company declined to provide more information without speaking to the domain’s administrator.
As Breitbart News revealed, Hillary’s email account clintonemail.com was operating with the same IP addresses as presidentclinton.com, an email account managed by the private Clinton Foundation and used by top Clinton Foundation staffers. The IP addresses were based in New York City, meaning that they were sharing the same email network at the same physical location, likely at one of the Clintons’ Midtown Manhtattan offices. Additionally, Chelsea Clinton’s work email account chelseaoffice.com was sharing the same email server.
wjcoffice.com, an email account used by Bill Clinton staffers, including his former communications director Jay Carson, also shared the same IP address as clintonemail.com.
Breitbart News has also discovered that clintonemail.com and presidentclinton.com were using the same IP port: port 443.
That Hillary Clinton shared a server with the Clinton Foundation and the offices of her husband and daughter raises further concerns about the illegality of her private email use, since other Clinton-World employees not affiliated with the State Department certainly had physical access to her server and the classified information on it.
Hillary’s private server also used the McAfee-owned MXLogic spam-filtering software, which is susceptible to a security breach and which made the information on her server accessible to McAfee employees during the numerous intervals in which her emails were passed through the MXLogic system.
The server was prone to crashes.
Hillary Clinton’s private email server went down in February 2010, and the State Department IT team didn’t even know that she was using a private email address, indicating that Clinton Foundation staff was working on her server as opposed to the agency’s IT professionals.
After the State Department Help Desk sent Clinton’s private email address a routine warning notifying her that her messages were being flagged with fatal errors, Hillary’s top aide Huma Abedin sent the Secretary an email explaining to her what was going on.
“Ur email must be back up!!,” Abedin wrote. “What happened is judith sent you an email. It bounced back. She called the email help desk at state (I guess assuming u had state email) and told them that. They had no idea it was YOU, just some random address so they emailed. Sorry about that. But regardless, means ur email must be back! R u getting other messages?”
Hillary’s server went down again during Superstorm Sandy in 2012.
The State Department IT worker who managed Hillary Clinton’s private email server while she was secretary of state will plead the Fifth Amendment if called to testify about his work on the Democratic presidential candidate’s mysterious email setup, his attorney informed the House Select Committee on Benghazi this week.
The committee subpoenaed Bryan Pagliano on Aug. 11, according to The Washington Post. In addition to testifying on Sept. 10, committee chairman Trey Gowdy asked Pagliano to produce documents related to the servers he managed on behalf of Clinton.
Pagliano worked on Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign before moving over to the State Department in May 2009, several months after Clinton took office. He left the agency at the same time as Clinton, in February 2013.
But in a letter to the Benghazi Committee on Monday, Mark MacDougall, Pagliano’s attorney, said that his client would assert his constitutional right against self-incrimination if called to testify. Pagliano is one of numerous Clinton aides that Gowdy’s panel intends to interview. Two of Clinton’s top aides will testify this week. Clinton herself is scheduled to publicly testify next month.
Pagliano’s decision to plead the fifth comes amid growing concerns over whether Clinton handled classified information on her private server. The FBI took control of the hardware last month after the Intelligence Community inspector general determined that two of the emails maintained on it contained “top secret” information.
“While we understand that Mr. Pagliano’s response to this subpoena may be controversial in the current political environment, we hope that the members of the Select Committee will respect our client’s right to invoke the protections of the Constitution,” wrote MacDougall, an attorney for high-profile Washington, D.C. law firm, Akin Gump.
According to The Post, MacDougall stated that two Senate committees had also contacted his client within the last week.
“Mr. Pagliano’s legal counsel told the committee yesterday that he would plead the Fifth to any and all questions if he were compelled to testify,” a spokesperson for Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Chuck Grassley told The Post in a statement.
The Senate Homeland Security and Homeland Affairs Committee also recently reached out to Pagliano, according to MacDougall’s letter.
When Pagliano was hired at State, he was given the titles of strategic adviser and special projects manager to the chief technology officer and the deputy chief information officer. While he oversaw Clinton’s email server, it was reportedly housed in the basement of her Chappaqua, N.Y. home. After Clinton left office, she hired a company in Denver to manage the device. The company, Platte River Networks, transferred the server from Clinton’s home to a New Jersey data center in 2013.
Numerous questions remain about the server, including whether it was cleared of all of Clinton’s emails, and, if so, who ordered it, and when.