White House Considering Ban on Personal Cell Phones of Staffers

White House Considering Ban On Personal Cell Phones, Says Report

White House Considering Ban On Personal Cell Phones, Says Report

According to Bloomberg, the White House is considering putting a ban in place on the use of personal phones at work by staff.

Personal devices could become compromised outside of the White House, however, and then potentially exploited once they return to the premises.

President Trump speaks to Chief of White House Staff John Kelly, left, in Washington. If they go through with it, the ban would apply to all staff in the president's executive office. The report mentions that the possibility of the ban has raised concerns among some staffers as they feel they will be cut off from their families and friends while they're at work.

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The White House already takes considerable precautions with wireless devices, including a requirement for officials to leave phones in cupboards outside of meeting rooms where sensitive or classified information is discussed. Mobile phone security has been a persistent issue for the White House, and at times some top officials have also anxious about staff using their personal devices to communicate with news reporters. In addition, government record keeping rules require that records of personal calls received and made over a government issued phone be filed away and kept available for eventual release.

According to the Bloomberg report, some anonymous administration officials described the ban as primarily motivated by "cybersecurity concerns", since the personal devices are not under the control of the White House and likely introduce vulnerabilities to the facility's wireless network. However, national security concerns may win out in the end.

In the early months of the administration, former White House press secretary Sean Spicer demanded members of his staff turn over their mobile phones for random checks to see if they had leaked damaging information to the media.

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