Chuck Grassley

United States Senator from Iowa

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Grassley Asks Defense Secretary to Account for Personal Email Use to Conduct Government Business

Feb 02, 2016

WASHINGTON – Sen. Chuck Grassley is asking Defense Secretary Ashton Carter to account for using personal email for government business, including whether anyone has reviewed whether classified information was involved.   Grassley said the personal email use is against various government laws and rules, including those maintained by the National Archives and Records Administration and the Defense Department, and might impede compliance with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

“Importantly, the use of private email in this context exposes the information to possible hacks and intrusions by foreign intelligence agencies,” Grassley wrote to Carter.  “As the Secretary of Defense, you are inevitably a prime target for foreign hackers.  As such, the threat is real and compliance with the law is essential.” 

Grassley asked a series of questions including whether Carter has provided all emails he sent from a personal device to the Defense Department for federal records preservation purposes and whether anyone conducted a review to see if Carter sent or received classified email on his personal device.

Grassley and various entities have been reviewing then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s questionable use of private email for official business and whether it compromised classified or sensitive information or impeded FOIA compliance.

Grassley is chairman of the Judiciary Committee, with jurisdiction over FOIA.

Grassley’s letter to Carter is available here.

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