Most people, if given a “get out of jail free card” by the FBI Director himself, would do their darndest to never ever do anything that would put them under the Justice Department’s microscope again. Most people aren’t Clintons though. Yes, she’s done it again.
Hillary required everyone that made it into the two binders she used (wasn’t Mitt Romney vilified for using binders in 2012) to pick her Vice President, provide login/password information for ALL their online activity, AND the online activity of their family members. That means if Prospective Vice Presidential Candidate Jane Doe made it into Hillary’s binders, Doe had to give Hillary the ability to access her Facebook, Gmail, YouTube, Twitter, Snapchat, AOL, Instagram, and etc. Jane Doe’s husband, kids aged 22 to 10, step son serving with the Marines in Japan, and (potentially) other family members were required to give Hillary their logins and passwords too.
Did Hillary’s campaign violate the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA)?
On July 5, 2016 the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled against former Facebook employee David Nosal for violating the CFAA. Nosal left Facebook, then asked someone he knew still working at Facebook to provide him with her login and password so that he could access Facebook’s data. According to the 9th Circuit, Nosal violated the CFAA by using someone else’s login and password.
Now, the case can be made that David Nosal was deliberately accessing Facebook’s corporate information so that be could in turn use it for his future business endeavors. How different is that though from what Hillary did to her prospective Vice Presidential candidates? She took login and password information to access corporately held information – sorry, if you thought your social media accounts belonged to you, the “terms of service agreement” you said you agreed to probably says otherwise – so that she could use that information for the remainder of her Presidential campaign.
Comparing Hillary Clinton to David Nosal then isn’t apples and oranges; what both did are more interchangeable than dissimilar in nature.
It’s unlikely that Twitter is going to convene their attorneys to consider legal action against Hillary Clinton. Same goes for most other social media outlets. Hillary will get a pass there. But what about Tim Kaine?
Tim Kaine is currently the junior Senator from Virginia. Tim Kaine undoubtedly has an unclassified senate.gov email account, and possibly a classified email account too. To obtain those accounts, Tim Kaine would have submitted what’s called a “System Authorization Access Request” (SAAR) form. The request form Tim Kaine submitted would have either explicitly stated that login/password sharing were illegal, or he would have been informed of this prior to being granted access to his government email accounts. In short, Tim Kaine would have known that sharing login and password information for his Senate email accounts was a huge violation of information security policy and, quite likely, a violation of the CFAA.
Did Hillary Clinton access Tim Kaine’s official Senate email account(s)? She wouldn’t have had to step foot in the Senate to do it. Outlook Web Access (OWA) email allows users to access their accounts from home, travel, etc. Hillary Clinton could have gone through Tim Kaine’s email from anywhere at any time.
And what of all the other prospective Hillary veeps? How many student’s college email accounts did Hillary hack her way into? What about private sector business accounts full of proprietary corporate information? What other government email accounts did she illegally access? Not to mention all the social media accounts Hillary looked at, jotted down names found on “friends” lists, and then “researched” those individuals as well.
The idea of Hillary Clinton being this invasive towards those in the running to be her number two brings to mind jack-booted thugs, big brother, and that toxic boss that turns an otherwise palatable working environment into a climate of hostility and fear.
If it were anyone else, the demands for prosecution under the CFAA would be heard loud and clear. But since a Clinton’s name is once again attached to the malfeasance, the “get out of jail free” card will be played yet again.