The BlackBerry device used by Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State, for personal use was not as secure as devices issued by the government, says a report from Politico, which cites knowledgeable former officials and executives.
Hacking non-classified communications could also prove fatal
In countries where governments control telecommunications, Hillary Clinton risked having all her conversations hacked when she visited. As per the report, the Secretary of State and her staff are generally briefed on potential security risks through communications. However, Clinton claims she never used her personal phone for any classified communications.
According to Politico, espionage agencies could collect important information regarding the processes followed by senior government officials, even by intercepting non-classified emails and discussions.
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A former official of the department’s Diplomatic Security Service told Politico, “Unless you’ve provided your personal phone to the State Department to put all the appropriate levels of encryption on it, you’ll be more vulnerable.”
According to Politico, Clinton could have used her BlackBerry in Vietnam, Brazil and South Korea. However, the news site found no evidence of her using her BlackBerry in China or Russia.
BlackBerry Enterprise Server good for organizations
Last week, Clinton aroused criticism from security experts when she claimed her private email account and the main server were not breached. Large organizations may take a month to discover a security breach, while it is nearly impossible for an individual to be able to figure out if any penetration into their phone or personal server has taken place, security experts told Politico.
There are about 600 IT policies, and knowing which of those should be turned on for better protection levels is very important for securing BlackBerry devices. Emails can be encrypted with the help of BlackBerry Enterprise Server, which can easily be subscribed to by the large organizations. However, for most private individuals, the cost is too much.
Penetration into devices and servers cannot be avoided completely, even with the use of government devices. According to Politico, in 2014, the unclassified email system of the State Department encountered a security breach and had to be taken down for some time.