Supposedly secure White House communications systems were hacked last Summer and “personal data” may have been “compromised” in the breach. Not just any personal data. The President, Vice-President, Secret Service and a whole bunch of other top ranking national security officials trust the Defense Information Systems Agency to keep all the phones and computers safe from our enemies. They failed.
White House insecurity
Is anybody capable of actually doing their job anymore? One would think that the guys in charge of the software updates on the computers that could launch a nuclear war would keep up with all the patches, but apparently that’s too much to ask.
A letter was quietly sent out under the radar earlier this month that was just seen by Reuters. The Defense Information Systems Agency, “responsible for secure White House communications,” admitted “Social Security numbers and other personal data in its network may have been compromised.” That’s not good. Not good at all.
Their website brags that from their Maryland headquarters at Fort Meade, their 8,000 military and civilian workers provide “direct telecommunications and IT support for President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, their staff and the U.S. Secret Service.” If that wasn’t enough exposure, DISA “also provides direct support to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and other senior members of the armed forces.” That’s a lot of brass. Oh, by the way, “its field offices support U.S. military commanders abroad.”
They aren’t saying what was compromised
The agency isn’t saying a whole lot about the incident, for obvious security reasons, as well as considerable embarrassment. According to Reuters, “it did not say what part of DISA’s network had been breached nor identify which individuals may have had their data compromised.” The government is describing the attack as a “data breach” which is just a little vague. It could mean anything from a rape of the whole network system with a hacker penetration or something as harmless as an inside only White House server being exposed to the internet.
Apparently, nobody has any idea what the effects could be. There haven’t been any obvious signs that anyone’s personal data has been misused. That doesn’t mean that highly sensitive information isn’t in the hands of someone with the capacity to use it in horrible ways. It seems that the only reason they’re getting around to admitting what happened between May and July of 2019 is because a law requires the notification of people “who may have had data taken.”
Chuck Prichard, a tight lipped spokesman for the Pentagon, assured the public that those affected will get all kinds of “information about actions that can be taken to mitigate possible negative impacts.” They’re throwing in free credit monitoring too. That will be a big reassurance when the hit team rolls up on a general’s house in the middle of the night. Prichard isn’t guessing about anything, including how many people might have been affected. Was it just the joint chiefs of staff? Or every service member around the world? You can rest assured, he soothes, DISA has “investigated the incident and taken appropriate measures to secure the network.”