That mental health app might share your data without telling you

Free apps marketed to people with depression or who want to quit smoking are hemorrhaging user data to third parties like Facebook and Google — but often don’t admit it in their privacy policies, a new study reports. This study is the latest to highlight the potential risks of entrusting sensitive health information to our phones.

Though most of the easily-found depression or smoking cessation apps in the Android and iOS stores share data, only a fraction of them actually disclose this. The findings add to a string of worrying revelations about what apps are doing with the health information we entrust to them. For instance, a Wall Street Journal investigation recently revealed the period tracking app Flo shared users’ period dates and pregnancy plans with Facebook. And previous studies have reported health apps with security flaws or that shared data with advertisers and analytics companies.

In this new study, published Friday in the journal JAMA Network Open, researchers searched for apps using the keywords “depression” and “smoking cessation.” Then they downloaded the apps and checked to see whether the data put into them was shared by intercepting the app’s traffic. Much of the data the apps shared didn’t immediately identify the user or was even strictly medical. But 33 of the 36 apps shared information that could give advertisers or data analytics companies insights into people’s digital behavior. And a few shared very sensitive information, like health diary entries, self reports about substance use, and usernames.

Those kinds of details, plus the name or type of app, could give third parties information about someone’s mental health that the person might want to keep private. “Even knowing that a user has a mental health or smoking cessation app downloaded on their phone is valuable ‘health-related’ data,” Quinn Grundy, an assistant professor at the University of Toronto who studies corporate influences on health and was not involved in the study, tells The Verge in an email.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR

https://www.theverge.com/2019/4/20/18508382/apps-mental-health-smoking-cessation-data-sharing-privacy-facebook-google-advertising

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Facebook’s new chief lawyer helped write the Patriot Act

Jennifer Newstead, a Trump appointee who served in the Justice Department under President Bush, will soon be taking over as general counsel of Facebook, the company announced in a press release Monday afternoon. Newstead will take over from Colin Stretch, who announced plans to retire last year.

“Jennifer is a seasoned leader whose global perspective and experience will help us fulfill our mission,” Sheryl Sandberg said in a statement included with the release.

But many are already troubled by Newstead’s history lobbying and legislating for more powerful electronic surveillance. As The Hill points out, a 2002 Justice Department press releasedescribes her as “helping craft” the legislation. Notorious Bush administration lawyer John Yoo described her as the “day-to-day manager of the Patriot Act in Congress” in his 2006 book.

Passed in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, the Patriot Act greatly expanded the scope of the government’s surveillance powers, enabling new techniques like roving wiretaps and so-called “sneak-and-peek” warrants. Section 215 of the Patriot Act was used to justify the bulk collection of telephone records from US carriers, although both the ruling and the legal interpretation that justified it remained secret until the Snowden leaks.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR

https://www.theverge.com/2019/4/22/18511633/facebook-general-counsel-patriot-act-jennifer-newstead

Apple face-recognition blamed by New York teen for false arrest

A New York student sued Apple Inc. for US$1 billion, claiming the company’s facial-recognition software falsely linked him to a series of thefts from Apple stores.

Ousmane Bah, 18, said he was arrested at his home in New York in November and charged with stealing from an Apple store. The arrest warrant included a photo that didn’t resemble Bah, he said in a lawsuit filed Monday. One of the thefts he was charged with, in Boston, took place on the day in June he was attending his senior prom in Manhattan, he said.

Bah said he had previously lost a non-photo learner’s permit, which may have been found or stolen by the real thief and used as identification in Apple stores. As a result, Bah claimed, his name may have been mistakenly connected to the thief’s face in Apple’s facial-recognition system, which he said the company uses in its stores to track people suspected of theft.

“He was forced to respond to multiple false allegations which led to severe stress and hardship,” Bah said in the complaint.

Apple and Security Industry Specialists Inc., a security firm that’s also named as a defendant, declined to comment on the suit.

The case is Bah v. Apple Inc., 19-cv-03539, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR

http://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/apple-face-recognition-blamed-by-new-york-teen-for-false-arrest-1.1247685

Islamic state claims responsibility for Sri Lanka bombings

Islamic state has claimed responsibility for coordinated bombings in Sri Lanka which killed 321 people and injured about 500 others, the group’s AMAQ news agency said on Tuesday.

The group did not give evidence for its claim. (Reporting by Omar Fahmy; Writing by Nadine Awadalla)

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR

http://news.trust.org/item/20190423103116-26pc2

Mexican soldiers detain American soldiers on U.S. soil

The Mexican government is powerless to control the cartels at our border. But somehow when it comes to belligerently confronting our own soldiers on our own soil, the Mexicans seem to muster the personnel and temerity to defend their side of the border. Moreover, they apparently have the unbridled impudence to complain about armed American citizens defending our border, while they have permanently transformed our country in the worst way imaginable through their disrespect of our sovereignty. This is clearly no longer about immigration, but about a pure invasion that requires a military buildup.

On April 13, at around 2 p.m. Central Time, a group of five or six suspected Mexican soldiers approached an unmarked vehicle of two U.S. soldiers stationed at the border in El Paso County, Texas, and ordered them out of the vehicle. According to Newsweek, which obtained the “serious incident report,” the soldiers were in fact active duty members of B Battery, 1st Battalion, 37th Field Artillery Regiment, not from a National Guard unit. The Mexican soldiers disarmed one of the U.S. soldiers and placed his sideaerm in the U.S. vehicle.

While the soldiers were parked south of the border fence near Clint, Texas, they were north of the Rio Grande riverbed, which placed them “appropriately in U.S. territory,” according to Maj. Mark Lazane, a spokesman for NORTHCOM. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the Department of Defense (DOD), after inquiring of the Mexican government, were informed that the Mexican soldiers thought that the Americans were south of the border. “Throughout the incident, the U.S. soldiers followed all established procedures and protocols,” according to NORTHCOM.

NORTHCOM confirmed that there are approximately 2,800 service members assigned to the border mission. “This includes approximately 1,200 on the Mobile Surveillance Camera mission, plus about 1,000 service members hardening ports of entry in Texas and New Mexico. There are approximately 200 personnel as part of a crisis response force, with the remainder being headquarters and logistics personnel supporting the mission.”

When I asked both NORTHCOM and the State Department if our government had conveyed our concerns to Mexico and asked for an apology, both departments declined to comment.

Zach Taylor, a retired 26-year veteran of the Border Patrol who has formed a group of retired border agents to better educate the public on the border, told CR that he is convinced these Mexican soldiers were making a political statement. “At the reported location the Rio Grande River is distinct and easily identified in relation to the actual international boundary,” asserted Taylor, who still lives near the border in Arizona. “That one of the supposed Mexican soldiers took one sidearm from an American and put it in the American vehicle is curious, as if the Mexicans knew exactly who they encountered, where they were encountered, and were simply making a statement. What the purpose of that statement was is open to broad speculation, but on the face of it, this was probably political – as in showing that to Mexico, borders mean nothing.” Taylor confirmed that he regularly saw this behavior during his time in the Border Patrol.

We have tens of thousands of soldiers stationed in other parts of the world fully equipped for war and with at least manageable rules of engagement. Why are the soldiers at our own border too few, so lightly armed, and seeking to “de-escalate a potentially volatile situation” of Mexican aggression rather than deterring it?

What is particularly disturbing about this incident is that one could defend Mexico’s powerless response to this border crisis and the robust cartel and smuggler activity as a lack of resources to secure its own border from non-state actors. But why is it that the Mexican government suddenly has the ability to cross into our own country and detain our own personnel, but is seemingly powerless to deal with the cartels on its own side of the border?

What is also disturbing is the lackluster response from our own government, juxtaposed to its aggressive posture against private militia groups seeking to secure our border. Our government refuses to hold the line at the border and defend the ranches from cartel activity by placing the military there in meaningful numbers and with a heavy deterrent. They certainly are not deterring the migrants. Just last week, 12,500 more illegals were released into our country with no regard for the public charge, safety concerns, or potential contagious diseases. That is literally the number one job of our federal government, as distinct from a state government. While nobody wants to see vigilantes patrolling our border, they are clearly not the problem, but a symptom of the lack of government control over our sovereignty.

Yet it appears that the FBI has arrested a leader of one New Mexico militia that recently detained a group of illegal immigrants until Border Patrol was able to get to the scene. On Saturday, the FBI arrested Larry Hopkins, the “national commander” of the United Constitutional Patriots, on firearms charges two days after the ACLU complained about the presence of this group at Sunland Park, New Mexico. According to Reuters, this is a group of mainly military veterans who have detained as many as 5,600 aliens until Border Patrol was able to arrive.

Why is it that our government, which appears unable or unwilling to deal with Mexican aggression, the cartels, or illegal immigration, is suddenly pursuing a zero-tolerance policy for American militias seeking to do a job the federal government won’t do? Failing to secure our borders is a breach of the social contract of government, as laid out in the Declaration of Independence, and if there is anything that would ever justify the citizenry to take action, it is this issue. It’s not something we want to see, but where is our own government in dealing with the problem?

Mexico’s Foreign Relations Ministry expressed its “deep concern” that these militia groups would “drive human rights abuses of people who migrate or request asylum or refuge in the United States.” That’s a pretty rich statement from a government that evidently refuses to apologize for stepping on our soil and detaining our own soldiers.

It’s also self-evident from this statement that Mexico, rather than working with us to stop this bogus asylum-seeking, is helping encourage it.

The president would be wise to announce a buildup of the military in Texas and New Mexico and change the rules of engagement. He should also renegotiate NAFTA while making border and immigration issues the main sticking points.

If our government would only go after those violating our sovereignty with as much rigor as they do those American veterans trying to defend it, justifiably or not, this entire issue would go away. As Trump often says, either we are a country, or we are not.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR

https://www.conservativereview.com/news/mexican-soldiers-detain-american-soldiers-u-s-soil-government-response/

U.S. sends message to Turkey, halts F-35 equipment shipments

The United States has halted delivery of equipment related to the stealthy F-35 fighter aircraft to Turkey, sources familiar with the situation said, marking the first concrete U.S. step to block delivery of the jet to the NATO ally in light of Ankara’s planned purchase of a Russian missile defense system.

In recent days, U.S. officials told their Turkish counterparts they will not receive further shipments of F-35 related equipment needed to prepare for the arrival of the stealthy jet, two sources familiar with the situation told Reuters. The aircraft is built by Lockheed Martin Corp.

The sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the next shipment of training equipment, and all subsequent shipments of F-35 related material, have been canceled.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has refused to back down from Ankara’s planned purchase of a Russian S-400 missile defense system that the United States has said would compromise the security of F-35 aircraft. Turkey has said it will take delivery of the S-400s in July.

The disagreement over the F-35 is the latest of a series of diplomatic disputes between the United States and Turkey including Turkish demands that the United States extradite Islamic cleric Fethullah Gulen, differences over Middle East policy and the war in Syria, and sanctions on Iran.

A Pentagon official had told Reuters in March that the United States had a number of items it could withhold in order to send Turkey a signal that the United States was serious about Ankara dropping its ambition to own the S-400.

The Pentagon did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Turkish officials in Ankara were not immediately available for comment.

The U.S. decision on the F-35s was expected to complicate Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu’s planned visit to Washington this week for a NATO summit. The latest development in the F-35 dispute came a day after Erdogan suffered one of his biggest electoral losses in decades in local elections.

Reuters reported last week that Washington was exploring whether it could remove Turkey from production of the F-35. Turkey makes parts of the fuselage, landing gear and cockpit displays. Sources familiar with the F-35’s intricate worldwide production process and U.S. thinking on the issue last week said Turkey’s role can be replaced.

The United States and other NATO allies that own F-35s fear the radar on the Russian S-400 missile system will learn how to spot and track the jet, making it less able to evade Russian weapons in the future.

In an attempt to persuade Turkey to drop its plans to buy the S-400, the United States offered the pricier American-made Patriot anti-missile system in a discounted deal that expired at the end of March. Turkey has shown interest in the Patriot system, but not at the expense of abandoning the S-400.

Turkey has engaged with U.S. negotiators in recent days about buying the Patriot system, a person familiar with the matter said. The system is made by Raytheon Co.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-turkey-f35-exclusive/exclusive-u-s-sends-message-to-turkey-halts-f-35-equipment-shipments-sources-idUSKCN1RD316

What Sony’s robot dog teaches us about biometric data privacy

The $2,900 pup is a companion robot, one Sony claims “learns its environment and develops relationships with people.” Aibo even enlists a camera in its nose to scan faces and determine who’s who so it can react to them differently.

Because of our office pet’s face-detecting capabilities, Sony doesn’t sell Aibo in Illinois. The state’s Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) regulates the collection of biometric data, including face scans.

So Aibo’s out in the land of Lincoln, but the story doesn’t stop with Sony’s quirky robot. Illinois also limits access to facial recognition in home security cameras, a feature that’s becoming increasingly prevalent in the consumer security market. Let’s take a closer look at BIPA, the growth of biometric tech in consumer products — and how other states in the US treat your biometric info.

Illinois law

The Biometric Information Privacy Act was established in 2008 to regulate “the collection, use, safeguarding, handling, storage, retention, and destruction of biometric identifiers and information.” BIPA defines “biometric identifiers” as retina scans, iris scans, fingerprints, hand scans, face scans and voiceprints.

Basically, an individual or a company needs “informed written consent” to use another individual’s biometric info.

State senator Terry Link for Illinois’ 30th district introduced Senate Bill 2400 on Feb. 14, 2008 to protect the biometric privacy of Illinois residents. State senators Christine Radogno, Iris Y. Martinez, David Koehler and Heather Steans served as co-sponsors of the bill. It was approved as the Biometric Information Privacy Act on Oct. 3, 2008.

Senator Link filed an amendment to BIPAon May 26, 2016 to redefine “biometric identifier,” to make it easier to collect certain biometric data, but later withdrew the amendment.

A Sony support page titled “Why Is Aibo Not for Sale in Illinois?” simply says:

Due to state regulations and policies, the Aibo™ robotic companion is not for sale or use in Illinois.

In order to mimic the behavior of an actual pet, an Aibo device will learn to behave differently around familiar people. To enable this recognition, Aibo conducts a facial analysis of those it observes through its cameras. This facial-recognition data may constitute “biometric information” under the law of Illinois, which places specific obligations on parties collecting biometric information. Thus, we decided to prohibit purchase and use of Aibo by residents of Illinois.

While Sony simply opted out of selling the face-detecting Aibo in Illinois, other companies, like Nest, sell their facial recognition-enabled cams in Illinois, with the facial recognition feature disabled.

A quick visit to the Nest Cam IQ Indoorpage says “Familiar face alerts require a Nest Aware subscription. Not available on Nest Cams used in Illinois.”

The Nest Cam IQ Indoor has an optional feature called familiar face alerts that you pay a monthly (or yearly) fee to access via the Nest Aware service. Like many other home security cameras with facial recognition, the IQ Indoor allows you to create a database with the faces of friends, family members, caregivers and any other people that regularly visit your home. That way, when you get a motion alert, the Nest app tells you it sees “Molly” or “Tyler.”

That feature won’t work in Illinois, even if you pay for Nest Aware. Google disables Nest’s facial recognition capabilities in the state: “We use a variety of factors to determine a user’s location, including IP address of their devices and the physical address associated with their account,” a Google spokesperson told me over email.

Privacy talk

Although BIPA remains the strictest state privacy law, Texas and Washington also regulate biometric information. A Texas law, established in 2009, similarly defines biometric identifiers as “a retina or iris scan, fingerprint, voiceprint, or record of hand or face geometry.”

A section of the law states: “A person may not capture a biometric identifier of an individual for a commercial purpose unless the person: informs the individual before capturing the biometric identifier; and receives the individual’s consent to capture the biometric identifier.”

Washington’s 2017 House Bill 493 doesn’t specifically reference face or hand scans in its definition of biometric identifier. The definition also doesn’t include “a physical or digital photograph, video or audio recording or data generated therefrom, or information collected, used, or stored for health care treatment, payment, or operations under the federal health insurance portability and accountability act of 1996.”

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a nonprofit advocacy group for digital privacy, supports state regulation of biometric data.

“When you start to capture biometrics from people it turns a corner to where we think that shouldn’t be happening without the consent of the person who’s biometrics are being taken,” EFF senior staff attorney Adam Schwartz says during a phone interview while referencing Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act.

“What it says [BIPA] is that, one private person can’t take biometrics from another private person without their consent. And that’s where we [the EFF] would draw the line,” Schwartz adds.

The facial recognition landscape

At the same time that states are implementing biometric privacy laws, we’re seeing more consumer devices with facial recognition. Here’s a list of home security cameras you can buy today with facial recognition capabilities.

Not only is facial recognition more prevalent, we’re also seeing more products that enlist fingerprints or hand scans. The iPhone and other smartphoneshave fingerprint-scanning capabilities so you can quickly unlock your phone. I saw a smart lock at CES 2019 called the Elecpro US:E that relies on a face scan and a hand scan to unlock.

Airports are increasingly adding tech that scans faces or fingerprints to determine who you are, too. Schwartz refers to the growing popularity of biometric tech as a “normalization of biometrics,” something the EFF finds concerning, he says.

“If you start using biometrics to board your airplane because it’s convenient, other forms of biometrics seem more normal. We’re very concerned about that,” explains Schwartz.

Whether or not you’re personally concerned about your biometric data, expect to see more regulations around it in the coming years. Alaska, Michigan, Montana and New Hampshire are already working on their own biometric laws. And, given the influx of devices that use biometric information both for consumer and commercial purposes, more are probably on the way.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR

https://www.cnet.com/news/what-sonys-robot-dog-teaches-us-about-biometric-data-privacy/

New York State Budget: Congestion Pricing Coming To Manhattan

It has worked in cities like London and Singapore and state lawmakers are hoping congestion pricing will decrease traffic in New York City, too.

CBS2’s Hazel Sanchez found out what Sunday’s historic news means for drivers.

Big Apple subway and buses will soon be getting some much-needed improvements at the expense of drivers heading into Manhattan.

“I think it’s a good idea,” one New Yorker said Sunday. “Every day it’s very, very (bad) traffic, so I think it can be better.”

Motorists entering Midtown Manhattan below 60th Street will be charged a toll, which is anticipated to raise more than $1 billion a year for the city’s ailing public transit system. A panel of experts will set the surcharges by the end of 2020, but sources told CBS2 drivers in cars will pay around $11.50 and truck drivers around $25.

“I work in Manhattan a lot and I don’t mind paying for it to get in there and if it helps congestion, even better,” Long Island resident Ed Crescimanni said.

Congestion pricing will be an added hardship for Charles Alvarez, who lives in the toll zone but needs to visit his mother in a Queens nursing home.

“That’s crazy. I can’t imagine doing that. But I have to see my mother and it’s something that would greatly impact me,” Alvarez said.

MORE: Gov. Cuomo Proud Of State Budget, Calling It “Probably The Strongest Progressive Statement That We’ve Made”

Traffic expert Sam Schwartz told CBS2 he thinks the system will make difference.

“The bottom line is the city is a competitive city. It is a world city. We can’t have a world city if our transit system is running 65 percent on time and our traffic is moving at 4.7 mph. This will get us back in the ball game to be a world-class city.”

It’s important to note that drivers will not be charged the toll more than once per day and the FDR and West Side highways will not be included.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR

https://newyork.cbslocal.com/2019/03/31/nys-budget-deal-passes-congestion-pricing/

Democrats to prepare subpoenas for full Mueller report

The House Judiciary Committee will prepare subpoenas this week seeking special counsel Robert Mueller’s full Russia report as the Justice Department appears likely to miss an April 2 deadline set by Democrats for the report’s release.

The Judiciary panel plans to vote on subpoenas Wednesday, a day after the deadline. The chairmen of several House committees asked for the full report last week after Attorney General William Barr released a four-page summary laying out the report’s “principal conclusions.” Barr said in a letter to the House and Senate Judiciary committees on Friday that a redacted version of the full 300 page report would be released by mid-April, “if not sooner.”

The planned committee vote, announced Monday morning, would not automatically issue subpoenas but authorize House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., to send them.

The panel will also vote to authorize subpoenas related to a number of President Donald Trump’s former top advisers, including strategist Steve Bannon, Communications Director Hope Hicks, Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, White House Counsel Donald McGahn and counsel Ann Donaldson. Donaldson served as McGahn’s chief of staff before both left the administration.

The five were probably key witnesses in Mueller’s probe of possible obstruction of justice. The meeting notice says they “may have received documents from the White House relevant to the special counsel investigation, or their outside counsel may have, waiving applicable privileges under the law.” The subpoenas would be related to documents where executive privilege was waived “and related matters,” the notice says.

The former White House advisers were included in a massive document request the committee made last month. Nadler sent requests to 81 people connected to Trump’s political and personal dealings as he launched a wide-ranging investigation into possible obstruction of justice, public corruption and abuses of power.

Democrats have said they will not accept a redacted version of the report, which is what Barr is preparing. Barr said in the letter Friday that he is scrubbing the report to avoid disclosing any grand jury information or classified material, in addition to portions of the report that pertain to ongoing investigations or that “would unduly infringe on the personal privacy and reputational interests of peripheral third parties.”

Democrats want all of that information, even if some of it can’t be disclosed to the public. They are citing precedents from previous investigations involving presidents and also information disclosed about the Russia investigation to Republicans last year when they held the House majority.

Barr wrote in his summary that the special counsel did not find that Trump’s campaign “conspired or coordinated” with the Russian government to influence the 2016 presidential election. He said Mueller reached no conclusion on whether Trump obstructed the federal investigation, instead setting out “evidence on both sides” of the question.

Barr himself went further than Mueller in his summary letter, declaring that Mueller’s evidence was insufficient to prove in court that Trump had committed obstruction of justice to hamper the probe.

Democrats say they want to know much more about both conclusions and they want to see the evidence unfiltered by Barr.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR

https://www.apnews.com/92c7fbd47c88463ba308ecd573de4b55

Official: Trump team overruled 25 security clearance denials

A career official in the White House security office says dozens of people in President Donald Trump’s administration were granted security clearances despite “disqualifying issues” in their backgrounds, such as concerns about foreign influence, drug use and criminal conduct.

Tricia Newbold, an 18-year government employee who oversees the issuance of clearances for some senior White House aides, says she compiled a list of at least 25 officials who were initially denied security clearances last year because of their backgrounds. But she says senior Trump aides overturned those decisions, moves that she said weren’t made “in the best interest of national security.”

Newbold’s allegations were detailed in a letter and memo released Monday by Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, chairman of the House Oversight and Reform committee. Cummings panel has been investigating security clearances issued to senior officials including Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner, former national security adviser Michael Flynn, and former White House aide Rob Porter.

The documents don’t identify the officials on Newbold’s list but they note that two are “current senior White House officials.”

The release of the information comes about a month after The New York Times reported that Trump ordered officials to grant Kushner a clearance over the objections of national security officials and after Newbold spoke out to NBC News and other news outlets about her concerns. It also sets the stage for another fight between the White House and the Democratic-controlled House. Cummings said he will move this week to authorize his first subpoena in the probe.

Cummings said the subpoena will be for the deposition of Carl Kline, who served as the White House personnel security director and supervised Newbold. He has since left the White House for the Defense Department.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment Monday.

Rep. Jim Jordan, the committee’s ranking Republican, said in a statement that Cummings’ probe is a “partisan attack” and an “excuse to go fishing” through personnel files. He also said that one person on Newbold’s list is a GSA custodian.

Newbold laid out her experience in the White House during a March 23 interview with bipartisan committee staff. Portions of that interview were in the memo released by Cummings.

According to the memo, Newbold’s list of overturned security clearance denials included “two current senior White House officials, as well as contractors and individuals throughout different components of the Executive Office of the President.”

“According to Ms. Newbold, these individuals had a wide range of serious disqualifying issues involving foreign influence, conflicts of interest, concerning personal conduct, financial problems, drug use, and criminal conduct,” the memo says.

Newbold said she raised her concerns up the chain of command in the White House to no avail. Instead, she said, the White House retaliated, suspending her in January for 14 days without pay for not following a new policy requiring that documents be scanned as separate PDF files rather than one single PDF file.

Newbold said that when she returned to work in February, she was cut out of the security clearance process and removed from a supervisory responsibility.

The committee has previously singled out Flynn, Porter and Kushner as it sought records from the White House about how their clearances were handled.

Flynn maintained his clearance even after the White House learned he lied to the FBI about his conversations with Russia’s ambassador and that he was under federal investigation by the Justice Department for his previous foreign work.

Kushner failed to initially disclose numerous foreign meetings on security clearance forms, and according to the Times, career officials recommended against granting him one before Trump personally overruled them.

Porter had high-level access with an interim security clearance even though the FBI repeatedly told the White House of past allegations of domestic violence lodged against him by two ex-wives.

Porter resigned after the allegations becoming public.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR

https://apnews.com/1759ac2858ee4aafb041f91cbd6d86e9