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Russia Hackers Had Access to Obama's Schedule

President's whereabouts not classified, but not public knowledge, either
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 8, 2015 9:40 AM CDT
Russia Hackers Had Access to Obama's Schedule
President Barack Obama talks with Jimmy Kimmel during a break in taping in Los Angeles March 12, 2015.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

(Newser) – Russian hackers' apparent infiltration of the White House computer network in October wasn't exactly confidence-inspiring, even though it was the unclassified portion of the system that was breached. Now US officials say some of the unclassified information that made its way onto hackers' screens was related to President Obama's itineraries—not classified knowledge, but not exactly public knowledge, notes CNN. The Hill points out that although the press has access to "a general outline" of Obama's daily routine, there are still phone calls and meetings that aren't made public, and that foreign spies would apparently love to know about. Obama's exact location at any given point during the day is also often kept on the down-low, and certain parts of the White House are off-limits to the press, the Hill adds.

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Besides the White House scheduling and press offices, others who use the hacked system include the general counsel's office and the budget and legislative liaison offices, ABC News reports. The hackers are believed to have accessed the White House network by first hacking State Department files, according to investigators, which leads to the fear that hackers have gotten back into the State Department system. One official tells CNN that the hackers have "owned" the network "for months." "There's always vulnerability," Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes noted at a press conference, per CBS News. "The fact is that's why we have a classified system because there's less risk in the classified system, and that is secure." (The FBI is going after one Russian hacker in particular.)

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