White House Considers Ban on Personal Phone for Staff

Today, Bloomberg reported that the White House is considering a ban on the personal use of phones among its staff members. According to sources, the said ban has been suggested a par of security measures and not as an action against press leaks. However, some staff fear that because the White House already blocks websites such as Google Hangouts and Gmail, the said move would fully isolate them from family and friends during the workday. Also, if staff make use of their government-issued phones for personal use instead, some staff worry about those calls being archived and made public.

Phones have been an issue in the White House. Last month, Politico reported that John Kelly, the White House Chief of Staff, had been making use of a compromised personal phone, which might have been breached by outside parties as early as December 2016 And President Trump has also been criticised for using his personal, unsecured smartphone instead of his government-issued one as well as for talking about classified material in the public Mar-a-Lago dining room while guests took photos with their phones and his dinner aides and guests reviewed classified documents while making use of their phone flashes as reading lights.

The suggested ban on personal phones has not yet been adopted, and as Bloomberg reports, if it is imposed, it is currently not clear when that would happen and to whom the ban would apply.