Senior State Department officials at the U.S. Embassy in Japan have been caught sending “sensitive” information over personal email accounts, subjecting the information to potential hacking attacks and other cyber threats, according to a new report by the department’s inspector general.
Embassy staff, including the U.S. ambassador to Japan, were found to conducted “official business” via their personal email addresses, highlighting an issue of concern among national security experts and officials in the wake of disclosures about Hillary Clinton’s email habits during her tenure as secretary of state.
The use of personal email among Obama administration officials has raised concerns about the protection of sensitive data, which could be stolen by hackers and foreign governments.
The State Department’s inspector general conducted “a review and confirmed that senior embassy staff, including the Ambassador, used personal email accounts to send and receive messages containing official business,” according to the August report, which had been until recently marked as “sensitive” but unclassified.
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