If the latest allegations are true, Hillary Clinton and her minions committed several felonies. And they knew this when they did it.
Hillary Clinton’s acolytes are racing to dismiss the latest allegations that classified material was cut and pasted into her emails, but this isn’t some mere oversight that can be hand-waved away with a shrug and a sad trombone honk. One doesn’t spill classified material into an unclassified system accidentally or through mere negligence. What these new revelations show—if they are true—is conduct that was conscious, intentional, and felonious as all get-out.
In basic and open-source terms, there is no one big computer system where innocuous, unclassified material shares space with classified material. They are kept on physically separate computer systems: there is the unclassified system, and there are several classified systems. They don’t connect, unless someone chooses to intentionally connect them.
When there is spillage of classified material into unclassified systems, all hell breaks loose. Well, at least it does when it’s not a friend of the administration doing the spilling.
Filching Information from a Secure Facility
Let’s take a look at what it would take to make this happen. Hillary Clinton refused to use a secure system. She wanted to use her own system because she could control it and unlawfully shield it from the prying eyes of the American people and their representatives. Her minions therefore had to deliberately act to circumvent the rules and procedures put in place to prevent people from doing exactly what Clinton wanted done.
First, someone would have to enter a secure facility—usually called a SCIF—to access a classified document on one of the secure systems. These terminals are behind locked doors with access controls and multiple security measures. You have to have the clearance to enter, and you leave your Android, iPad, laptop, and everything else with a chip outside.
Inside, you access the terminal and review the document you are working with. There are myriad warnings that you are viewing classified material. It is no surprise. So, Hillary’s minion would be knowingly examining classified information when he or she decided to break the law and send it to Hillary’s unclassified, private email server.
There are several ways one could move the classified material, each almost too horrific to contemplate to anyone who has worked with sensitive materials. You need to understand that even discussing this gives professionals the shakes. There are a lot of serious things in the national defense world, but nothing is taken more seriously than classified material. People can and do go to jail for screwing up. Well, at least the little people do.
How to Get the Secure Information Out
One way would be to download it to a portable medium, like a thumb drive. Leaving aside that you can’t bring a thumb drive anywhere near a SCIF, the USB ports on the computers are likely deactivated. You would need a technician to somehow work around that, which is in itself horrifying. The easier way would be to print the material out so you could take it somewhere else and either type or scan it into a new file on an unclassified system.