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News Clash

Dear CNN: Reporter Testifies Before Congress That Obama-Era Intel Agencies Spied On Her — Is That News?

Buckle up, peeps! This is one story you won’t see on CNN!

Award-winning former CBS correspondent and New York Times Bestselling author, Sharyl Attkisson, had been embroiled in a lawsuit with the Obama-era DOJ and FBI for years, and the case was summarily dismissed in 2017. But was that the right decision? Recently, she testified before Congress about the unlawful surveillance of her computers and phones.

Attkisson has made quite the name for herself, with two books on media and government that became NYT Bestsellers.

She also contradicted Hillary’s assertion that she faced sniper fire in Bosnia. Attkisson knew this because she accompanied Hillary on that trip. Hillary doubled-down before backing off and saying that she ‘misspoke’ because she was ‘sleep deprived’.

Oddly enough, it wasn’t too long after that, (coincidentally, it was after Hillary had become Secretary of State,) that the Obama-era intelligence community started spying on Attkisson. The reporter, who then worked for CBS News had been digging into the Obama administration’s scandals — Benghazi, Fast and Furious, and Obamacare.

Attkisson was tipped off that her computer and phones had been compromised. CBS News hired an outside firm to complete a forensic analysis of the equipment. Attkisson did the same for her home computer.

‘Unauthorized access’ was confirmed.

CBS News spokeswoman Sonya McNair said that a cybersecurity firm hired by CBS News “has determined through forensic analysis” that “Attkisson’s computer was accessed by an unauthorized, external, unknown party on multiple occasions in late 2012.”

“Evidence suggests this party performed all access remotely using Attkisson’s accounts. While no malicious code was found, forensic analysis revealed an intruder had executed commands that appeared to involve search and exfiltration of data. This party also used sophisticated methods to remove all possible indications of unauthorized activity, and alter system times to cause further confusion. CBS News is taking steps to identify the responsible party and their method of access.”

Source: CBS News, August 7, 2013

Attkisson launched a lawsuit against former Attorney General, Eric Holder, and the Department of Justice, the United States Postal Service, and later adding the Federal Bureau of Investigations and Verizon to the list.

In 2013, Attkisson brought the computers into the IG’s office after the independent forensic audits had proved infiltration using software proprietary to the federal intel agency.

By way of background, in 2013, I filed a complaint with the IG’s office asking it to investigate the government-based computer surveillance. CBS News — where I worked at the time — would not allow the IG to examine my CBS laptop, which had been infiltrated (as CBS publicly announced on Aug. 7, 2013). But I asked the IG to examine one of my personal home computers that was also compromised.

Some of my intel sources didn’t want me to hand over any computer. “You can’t trust the inspector general,” they told me.

But I figured there was little downside. We already had our irrefutable forensics findings from our examinations. If the IG probe was competent and honest, as I expected it might be, then it could turn up names of the government actors responsible. If not, no harm done.

Attkisson was in constant contact with the team, and they even showed her their notes as the investigation went along. But suddenly, things changed after the report was completed. And she was stonewalled. She couldn’t get a copy of the report.

Over the coming weeks, I repeatedly asked for the findings but was told it was still in the IG general counsel’s office. I formally requested that the general counsel release a copy to me. No luck.

One investigator had told me I could always file a Freedom of Information Act request to obtain my report and notes. I did so; under the law, a response was due within about 30 days. It’s been years.

When the DOJ’s inspector general won’t follow the law, to where can a citizen turn?

Meantime, under pressure from Congress, the IG eventually released what my attorney refers to as a “wiped” summary — not the actual report or notes — with spin that implied there had been no intrusion. This was quickly presented, publicly, by then-Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), who had gotten a copy of the summary with lightning speed; and it was dutifully reported by some in an unquestioning press.

So, Stuart Smalley (D-MN) got the report summary, but the owner of the computer couldn’t get a copy.


In March 2018, something quite unexpected was discovered.

Not long ago, my forensics team asked if I used that Apple computer after the IG returned it. My team was conducting a new exam. “No,” I replied, “it hasn’t functioned since before I gave it to the IG. I just stored it when they returned it. Why?”

“Because — that’s not your hard drive inside the computer they gave back to you,” they told me. “… We know the serial number on the hard drive when you bought it. We recorded the same serial number on our earlier forensics exams. This is a different hard drive. Completely different serial number. Not even close.

Source: The Hill

Which brings us up to date on why Sharyl Attkisson is testifying before Congress about government spying on a journalist in relation to a bipartisan ‘Shield’ law to prevent reporters from being jailed for refusing to identify their sources.


The treatment of Attkisson is nothing new.

The Obama administration had spied on — and tracked the movements of — Fox News reporter, James Rosen, as well as secretly obtained the phone records of Associated Press reporters.

But it’s been carefully skirted, or outright excused, by the Media (D) because it would make the Obama administration look bad.

Jumping in to check Attkisson’s Twitter this morning, this came up:

Sharyl Attkisson’s case is precisely why we need to ‘Drain the Swamp’.

K. Walker

ClashDaily's Associate Editor since August 2016. Self-described political junkie, anti-Third Wave Feminist, and a nightmare to the 'intersectional' crowd. Mrs. Walker has taken a stand against 'white privilege' education in public schools. She's also an amateur Playwright, former Drama teacher, and staunch defender of the Oxford comma. Follow her humble musings on Twitter: @TheMrsKnowItAll and on Gettr @KarenWalker

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