The security of Clinton’s private email system, including the server in the basement of her home in Chappaqua, N.Y., has been an important question since Clinton acknowledged in March that she had used it for all official government business as secretary of state.
Clinton’s account received five emails disguised as traffic tickets on the evening of August 3, 2011. But that does not mean Russians were the culprit.
Nick Merrill, a spokesman for Clinton’s Democratic presidential campaign, said: “We have no evidence to suggest she replied to this email or that she opened the attachment”. The email came from an address that resembled a New York City government account and contained a heading from the “New York State – Department of Motor Vehicles”. Most commercial antivirus software at the time would have detected the software and blocked it.
The State Department has told Senate investigators that it didn’t provide Hillary Rodham Clinton’s lawyer with a secure-enough method to read now-highly classified material from her homebrew email server because it didn’t anticipate that the messages would be deemed so secret. The State Department plans to release them all by January.
After Google revealed in June 2011 that suspected Chinese hackers tried to steal the passwords of hundreds of Gmail accounts held by senior USA government officials, Clinton and three top aides discussed the issue.
Slaughter was director for policy planning at the State Department under Clinton.
“As someone who attempted to be hacked (yes I was one), I am not sure we want to telegraph how much folks do or don’t do off state mail [because] it may encourage others who are out there”, she wrote.
Clinton has apologized for her email arrangement, but also has complained that the “drip, drip, drip” of incremental revelations and unflattering headlines from the emails were out of her control. The discussion never mentioned Clinton’s own usage of a private email account and server. “We actually need more funds to significantly upgrade our technology”.
But Cheryl Mills, a former chief of staff for Clinton and long-time friend who was copied on the email chain, said she anxious that widespread publicity about the poor IT systems would make the State Department more of a target for hackers.
Kirby said the process of upgrading documents is “routine” and “happens frequently”.
“The information we upgraded today was not marked classified at the time the emails were sent”, Kirby stressed.