John Kelly's Personal Phone Hacked

Jerome Frank
October 7, 2017

According to a new report from Politico that cites three U.S. government officials, White House tech staff only found out about the suspected breach when Kelly handed in the phone this summer, complaining that it had been glitchy and not updating properly for months.

The report stated White House officials determined Kelly's phone was hacked after the administration's tech support department discovered a breach while examining the device.

A White House spokesperson says Kelly largely used his government-issued phone rather than his personal phone, which has now been taken away.

Kelly reportedly told White House staffers that the phone hadn't been working and updating software properly.

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A Politico report explained that the phone belonging to President Donald Trump's chief of staff had been hacked.

It's unknown whether foreign governments or hackers could have had access to his communications, including internal White House information. But it turned out that the inability to get himself new Snapchat filters was the least of his worries; the phone was vulnerable to hackers and hostile governments. The IT team found numerous functions of the phone not to be working and deemed it compromised.

"The [attackers] I would be most anxious about are nation-states or other actors who may have access to resale of commercial spyware sold to nation-states", Marczak explained. "The average user won't notice anything at all". Kelly is no longer using the compromised device.

Trump's own cell phone use came under scrutiny during the campaign and in the early days of his administration, as he reportedly used a Samsung device running an Android operating system that was unsecured.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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