White House is said to weigh personal mobile phone ban for staff

According to a new report, the White House is thinking about implementing a new ban which will prevent members of the staff from using their personal phones when they're at work.

At least five Trump administration officials, who spoke anonymously because the ban isn't final, said employees were anxious that the rule would block them from communicating with family and friends, Bloomberg reported on Monday.

The proposed ban is instead driven by cybersecurity concerns, the officials said. According to one official, too many personal phones, which aren't as secure as government devices, are connected to the wireless network in-house.

In October, Politico reported that White House officials believed the personal mobile phone of chief of staff John Kelly had been compromised for months, raising the prospect that foreign adversaries may have gained access to data on the device. The official is remaining anonymous because the proposal is not yet final.

It is yet to be decided by top officials of this ban will be imposed or not. White House staff said they feared being accused of using government resources to make important personal calls, and that personal calls made on work phones could potentially be made public because of record-keeping procedures.

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

White House staffers could be relegating to using government-issued cellphones with limited capabilities while on the job, the report said, effectively restricting their communications outside of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue but also lessening their odds of spurring a security breach.

The nature of the leaks in the Trump White House have been a deviation from the norm. Spicer warned his staff that using encrypted messaging apps like Signal and Confide were violations of the Presidential Records Act.

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