National Security Agency (NSA) director Michael S. Rogers adamantly refused on Thursday to say whether Hillary Clinton’s private email server was ever hacked.
“It’s something I’m just not going to get into,” Rogers told Yahoo! News’ Michael Isikoff when asked in an interview if Clinton’s server was ever compromised.
Clinton’s off-the-books email system involved a personal email account, personal BlackBerry and private server. The latter was housed in her Chappaqua, N.Y. home and managed by State Department information technology specialist Bryan Pagliano.
State Department officials outside of Clinton’s inner circle were reportedly not aware of Clinton’s server until two years into her tenure. That suggests that the system did not have the same round-the-clock maintenance and monitoring as the State Department’s email systems, putting it at increased risk of being breached.
Clinton and her campaign have repeatedly claimed that there is “no evidence” that the server was hacked. And according to The New York Times, the FBI has reviewed security logs provided by Pagliano and have found no evidence of a hack.
But many cyber security experts say that hacks can be difficult to spot, especially when conducted by sophisticated foreign spy agencies.
One of Rogers’ predecessors, Michael Hayden, has said that there is a “high probability” that a foreign intelligence service infiltrated Clinton’s server. Former Sec. of Defense Robert Gates, who served with Clinton in the Obama administration, has also said he believes it is highly likely that Clinton’s server was hacked.
More than 2,000 now-classified emails were housed on the server. Nearly two dozen of those contained “Top Secret” information.
Isikoff pressed Rogers a second time on whether Clinton’s server had been compromised.
“It’s something I’m just not going to get into,” the spy chief repeated.
Asked by Isikoff if he knew an answer to the question, Rogers remained consistent.
“It’s something I’m not going to get into,” he said.
Besides being tasked with monitoring foreign intelligence and counterintelligence operations, NSA also works to ensure that U.S. government communications systems are safe and secure from foreign entities.
In that capacity, NSA became involved early on in Clinton’s tenure in one of the main components of her home-brew email system — her BlackBerry.
Clinton asked NSA to design a special device that she would be able to use in the State Department’s executive suites. The agency had designed a super-secure device for President Obama.
Clinton’s request was rejected.
After that, Clinton used a personal BlackBerry to conduct government business, a decision which cyber security experts have said put her at greater risk of being hacked. A Daily Caller investigation found that Clinton appears to have used her personal BlackBerry during trips to Russia and China, both of which have robust spy agencies.