The White House Thursday night criticized an “inaccurate” New York Times report alleging that President Trump’s careless use of a personal iPhone allows Russia and China to spy on his private conversations.
White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley said the security for the president’s one official government iPhone “follows industry best practices and is closely managed under government supervision in conjunction with recommendations from industry partners.”
“The phone is rotated on a regular basis and is constantly monitored for any security vulnerabilities and attacks, in accordance with recommendations from the intelligence community,” Mr. Gidley said.
Mr. Trump earlier criticized the Times’ report and denied using anything but a government-issued phone.
“I only use government phones, and have only one seldom used government cell phone,” Mr. Trump tweeted. “Story is soooo wrong!”
Several unnamed officials expressed their frustration to the Times, and said the president has ignored several warnings that his communications are likely accessed by foreign adversaries.
The report asserted that Mr. Trump has three iPhones — two secured by the National Security Agency and with normal capabilities. Though the Times noted that all of his iPhones are vulnerable to cyberattacks.
China, the officials said, is trying to glean how to manipulate the president to avoid making the trade war worse and has already compiled a list of people Mr. Trump often talks to. Two of the individuals China hopes to use are Stephen Schwarzman and Steven Wynn, the Times noted.
The lawyer for Mr. Wynn, former casino mogul in Las Vegas, did not give a comment.
However, a spokesperson for the Blackstone Group, where Mr. Schwarzman is a chief executive, said he “has been happy to save as an intermediary on certain critical matters between the two countries at the request of both heads of state.”
Mr. Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping are expected to meet in November at the G20 summit.
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