Keeping an eye on big government

Why Hillary’s Private Server was such a Glaring Security Risk

This past weekend on I Spy Radio (Show # 5-32), we had the pleasure of interviewing James Hirsen of Headline Hollywood and Kevin Freeman, one of the world’s leading experts on economic warfare and financial terrorism. (See his site, secretweapon.org and his blog, Global Economic Warfare.) Plenty to choose from on what to write about for this Monday Morning wrap-up, no doubt the new insights on Hillary’s private email server (1) practically leaped out at both me and my ever-astute producer. So what did we learn?

Hillary’s Deleted Emails

There’s been a lot of talk—a lot of talk—about Hillary’s private email server, especially her 30,000+ deleted emails. And, sadly, all that talk has led to pretty much more talk and more discussions but almost no actions.  And by that, I mean no jail time. (Kevin’s thoughts on that very issue are ’round about the 43:50 mark).

But all that talk and suspicion focuses almost entirely on the content of Hillary’s emails—especially the deleted ones. Or on what she has or has not turned over. Yet. Or on topics like Benghazi. Or whether she was giving political favors to big Clinton Foundation donors. And while all of that is important, it turns out that the contents of Hillary’s emails may not be the most damning part of this story.

Hillary’s Private Server

At this point, pretty much everyone except Hillary condemns her use of a private email server for her official State Department business—with the possible exception of Bill. (Maybe it’s just me, but do you ever get the sense that if there was even a slim chance that throwing Hillary under the bus would make him popular, Bill would it in a heartbeat? And if there was a gorgeous young intern on the bus, he’d back it up and hit her again—”Watch me get some air, honey.” But I digress.)

Anyway. Here too, the discussion on Hillary’s private server has been missing an important point. To date, the discussion has largely focused on the fact it allowed her to circumvent the law, lack of transparency, and to some extent the lack of security. Perhaps the reason the important point is skipped over is that it gets a little technical. So let me expand on an analogy I used on the show to help illustrate this.

Before we go any further, use the player here to enjoy some Medieval mood music. You’ll see why in a moment.

Behind the Castle Walls

Bird's eye view of Windsor Castle
Windsor Castle, showing the towers and inner keep

Imagine you’re the Queen of the State Department and you want to get a message to King Obama. Okay, I admit; so far this still sounds a lot like real-life Washington but hang in here.

There you are, holed up are in the Chancellor’s Tower at Windsor and you need to get a message to the King over in Keep (that’s the inner most part of the castle). No problem. Rather than walking all that way and up and down all those, literally, stone-cold stairs, you scratch out your message, hand it to a courier who, forthwith, runs it to the King over in the Keep. The advantage here is the courier remains safely behind the castle walls at all times. There’s that moat and the towers, the armed guards and so even if someone did get behind the walls, it’s a safe bet they’d find their rears at the business end of a pike real soon.

This is what Hillary email should have looked like had she used the government server. Everything stays, as it were, behind the castle walls. But that’s not what she did.

Hillary’s Private Server: The Drunken Messenger

Hillary's messenger stopping along the way
Hillary’s email messenger stopping along the way

Back again to our analogy. Let’s say you’re Queen Hillary, safely behind the castle walls up in the Chancellor’s Tower and you need to dispatch a message to Sir William of Chappaqua in another castle a few states over. You once again scratch out your message and hand it to your messenger. Except this is where it gets very different.

The way email works is this: when you send your email, it goes out into the world but before it gets to its final destination, it’s more like the old Pony Express than something out of Star Trek. Your email doesn’t get sent through some subspace channel directly from your computer to the recipient’s computer. Instead, just like the Pony Express, the mail is handed from one server to another all along the route. Your email is handed to your local server (your ISP—Internet Server Provider) and from there to a number of other servers as it wends its way to its final destination, your recipient’s ISP and, from there, to your recipient’s computer.

To return to the analogy, Queen Hillary’s email left the safety of the castle walls and went out into the countryside—and stopped at every tavern along the way for a pint or two before staggering out the door on to the next one.  This is how Hillary sent official, confidential, and classified State Department emails.

But Wait, it Gets Worse

That tavern picture above isn’t too far from the truth. The “secret message” is just sitting, there on the table and potentially anyone can sneak a peek. Or, as the servant toddles off to the next tavern, he could get waylaid and robbed or worse. Worse you say? Worse, say I.

What’s worse is that while the messenger is either sleeping it off under the bar or staggering off to the next village, someone could not only read the message but potentially slip a bit of malicious code in message pouch. Not so much as change the message (“P.S. Bill, I want a divorce”) but code that could make it easier to get into the castles. This would be like a note to the guards that, at 12:01 a.m. on Michaelmas, open the gate.

This is malware. It gets into a computer, behind the castle walls, and makes it easier for the barbarian hackers to gain entry. As revealed on the show, as of the last year of the Bush presidency, the Chinese government had hired 100,000 full-time hackers to do nothing but try to hack into the U.S. government, major companies, financial systems, and internet infrastructure. So what do you figure are the chances one or more of those 100,000 hackers managed to hack into a “tavern” and lie in wait for a government messenger to stagger in?

But Wait, it Gets Worse Yet

Hillary's Chappaqua residence. Sort of looks like a castle, doesn't it?
Hillary’s Chappaqua residence. Sort of looks like a castle, doesn’t it?

At long last, the dutiful messenger finally staggers up to Castle Chappaqua. He salutes the guard and presents his credentials at the same time and wobbles a bit as the guard yanks them from his hand. The two blush a little as the sounds of feminine giggles waft down from one of the towers — oh, sorry. Got lost there in the moment.

What’s worse than an unguarded messenger carrying classified information going from one castle to another, stopping at every tavern along the way? What’s worse is precisely what Hillary has done. Brace yourself.

Remember that messenger carrying the message? That he kept leaving on the bar? On the bar of every tavern and dive between Windsor and Chappaqua? The message in the courier bag into which anyone who knew how could slip other messages? If all that weren’t already horrible enough, given the sensitivity of the messages, think about this:  every time Hillary emailed—er, messaged—King Obama or any other government official—even people in State Department offices just down the hall—the messenger was dispatched all went to Chappaqua. And back.

That’s right. Instead of a messenger going from Tower A to Tower B safely behind the castle walls, Hillary sent that drunken messenger all the way to Chappaqua and back, stopping again at every tavern along the way. Just to get an email  to King Obama.

Yes, the contents of those emails matter. Destroying emails is criminal enough. But what Hillary has exposed the entire government to —and all of us— is far, far worse. And she wants to be president? She ought to be in jail.

 

Footnotes

The discussion with Kevin about Hillary’s private email server and her deleted emails takes place in segment six but to really get the full brunt of it, you need to listen to the whole show. It puts what she’s done in context.

Copyright © Aug. 10, 2015 Mark Anderson and I Spy Radio. All rights reserved. If citing this article, please cite http://ispyradio.com/new-insights-on-hillarys-private-server/ or link to www.ispyradio.com.

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2 Comments

  1. Kati J Kati J
    August 11, 2015    

    Ugh. No wonder the Dems are turning to Sanders. Their leaders (or are they organizers?) have to know this sort of crap and are probably steering people to Sanders. I vote to bring back stocks in the town square.

    • Dr Mark Dr Mark
      August 11, 2015    

      Thanks Kati… I’m with you. Seems like the more we know, the worse it gets. Wouldn’t surprise me at all if the D leadership knows all about this. Personally, I think we’ll see a “strategic withdrawal” from Hillary in the next few months.

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