MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough hammered Jared Kushner for using his personal phone to conduct foreign affairs — and a former FBI agent explained just how easily the White House adviser could be hacked by Russia and other nations.
The attorney for Kushner and wife Ivanka Trump acknowledged the couple used personal email accounts to conduct government business, and the president’s son-in-law also used the Facebook-owned encryption app to communicate with Saudi Arabia’s crown prince and others.
“Let’s go back to Hillary Clinmalton,” Scarborough said. “What did we talk about, what did the New York Times talk about, what did the Washington Post talk about for a year and a half during the campaign? The fact that Hillary Clinton wouldn’t step up to the plate and explain how she communicated as secretary of state with foreign leaders using this home-brewed server.”
The “Morning Joe” host explained that Kushner would have been even more aware of the problem with his actions after Clinton’s emails became a primary theme in President Donald Trump’s election, and he said that makes this situation much worse.
“The big question was, was there malice aforethought, was she doing it specifically to hide communications from Americans to get around the regulations, to get around the laws, that the FBI were investigating?” Scarborough said. “We don’t have those questions here. Jared Kushner knew what had happened to Hillary Clinton. There was clearly malice aforethoughtt. He was clearly intentionally hiding communications between himself and the murderer who now runs Saudi Arabia.”
“If the FBI launched an investigation against Hillary Clinton, why in the hell would they not be launching an investigation in this case against Jared Kushner for doing something far worse?” he added.
Former FBI agent Clint Watts, a cybersecurity expert, said Kushner’s communications were highly vulnerable to hackers — and he suggested they quite likely had been intercepted.
“It’s totally irresponsible,” Watts said. “I think for U.S. government, if you work in the intelligence agencies of the FBI or if you’re a diplomat, you have to ask yourself why does Erdogan or MBS or Putin or Kim Jong-un all know more about what the White House is saying than I do? We are blinded to the communications, but we have people running around with iPhones just firing off messages. It’s completely irresponsible.”
“This cannot be secured by sending through WhatsApp, a Facebook company, which came out yesterday — maybe we left everyone’s passwords out on the internet,” Watts added. “This is ridiculous. It breaks security protocols and it’s vulnerable. Foreign dictators, authoritarians, know more about the communications in the White House than we do in our own country.”