A new report from the State Department's Inspector General is tearing the lid off of Hillary Clinton's email scandal, and RadarOnline.com has all the dirty details!
A 78-page audit was delivered to Congress on Wednesday and it slammed Clinton and her department for "longstanding systemic weaknesses" regarding communications in the agency.
The inspector general said that Clinton "had an obligation to discuss using her personal email account to conduct official business" with senior officials who handle security and records. But there was "no evidence" that the former secretary of state sought permission from anyone in the department to manage state business on her private email server.
If Clinton had asked for approval, the report claims that the department officials "did not—and would not—approve her exclusive reliance on a personal email account to conduct Department business."
This report is the first official audit of the controversy to be made public. The OIG (Office of Inspector General) also revealed that Clinton was not the first secretary of state to use a private email to send classified information. The report states that Colin Powell used his personal laptop while secretary of state. "Secretary Powell has publicly stated that, during his tenure as Secretary, he 'installed a laptop computer on a private line' and that he used the laptop to send emails via his personal email account to his 'principal assistants, individual ambassadors, and foreign minister colleagues,'" the report alleges. "Secretary Powell's representative advised the Department in 2015 that he did not retain those emails or make printed copies."
As part of their timeline of records management requirements and policies, the report listed a policy instituted in 1995 that "an email may be a record and agencies using external email systems must take steps to ensure these emails are preserved."
In 2009, during Clinton's tenure as secretary of state the CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) added a provision saying: "Agencies that allow employees to send and receive official electronic mail messages using a system not operated by the agency must ensure that Federal records sent or received on such systems are preserved in the appropriate agency recordkeeping system. "
But the report specified that sending emails from one's personal account to employees does not suffice as way to preserve a Federal record. "Therefore, Secretary Clinton should have preserved any Federal records she created and received on her personal account by printing and filing those records with the related files in the Office of the Secretary," the report blasts. "At a minimum, Secretary Clinton should have surrendered all emails dealing with Department business before leaving government service and, because she did not do so, she did not comply with the Department's policies that were implemented in accordance with the Federal Records Act."
The audit also stated that NARA (National Archives and Records Administration) told OIG that "Secretary Clinton's production of 55,000 pages of emails mitigated her failure to properly preserve emails that qualified as Federal records during her tenure and to surrender such records upon her departure."
Clinton has also been heavily criticized for her inability to keep the server secure. One hacker named "Guccifer" claims he easily breached the server in 2013. The report says that Clinton was warned about hackers targeting personal, unclassified email accounts, but her team denies that she was ever breached.