Hacked by 5 Foreign Intelligence Agencies: What Difference Does It Make?

In his article of November 2, 2016, “Bret Baier: FBI Sources Believe Clinton Foundation Case Moving Towards ‘Likely an Indictment,'” Tim Hains of Real Clear Politics writes, “Fox News Channel’s Bret Baier reports the latest news about the Clinton Foundation investigation from two sources inside the FBI.”

One of the important pieces of information he shares is that “FBI sources say with 99% accuracy that Hillary Clinton’s server has been hacked by at least five foreign intelligence agencies, and that information have been taken from it.”

If this is true, what are the implications of this for the United States?

What Difference Does It Make?

A lot, apparently!

Until and unless the information that was hacked is released, there is no way for the average American to calculate the depth of seriousness and/or the actual or potential harm that has occurred to, or will be inflicted on, the United States. Since the information hacked was “classified,” the chances are slim to none that the American people will ever be told about the specifics of such information.

One fact that is beyond dispute is the incredible seriousness of the ability of a foreign nation to hack into classified information of the United States. It goes without saying that there is a legitimate reason why information is deemed “classified.” In clear language, this means that only people who have gone through extensive background checks may read it, and then only after they have taken an oath, subject to severe penalties for a breach. After reading it, they may never disclose any of it.

Foreign Access to Confidential and Classified Information

The fact that a government official made foreign access to confidential and classified information easier, either through intent or reckless behavior, is not only illegal, but it is also unforgivable. Not only does such a breach of protocol, ethics, and law put the information out to our enemies and/or competitors, thereby putting our borders, our soldiers, and our public in harm’s way, it puts specific people who are mentioned in the communications subject to threats and blackmail. If successful, the threats and blackmail open up still more information to be leaked due to fear for oneself or for a family member or both.

In sum, the ripples, both direct and collateral, from such dangerous conduct are far reaching, and the damage is extreme and incalculatable.

Photo by REUTERS/Jason Reed