by WorldTribune Staff, July 3, 2018
The House Democratic Caucus’s server went “missing” after it became evidence in the House IT scandal investigation connected to Imran Awan, a report said.
A secret memo from the top law enforcement official in Congress also said more than “40 House offices may have been victims of IT security violations,” The Daily Caller reported on July 2.
The memo, addressed to the Committee on House Administration (CHA) and dated Feb. 3, 2017, was recently reviewed and transcribed by The Daily Caller News Foundation.
Shortly after a report from the House Inspector General came out identifying the House Democratic Caucus server as key evidence in a criminal probe, the evidence was stolen, multiple sources connected to the investigation told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
“They [the Awans] deliberately turned over a fake server” to falsify evidence, one official close to the CHA alleged. “It was a breach. The data was completely out of [members’] possession.”
Related: Meanwhile, where is Imran Awan and the DNC server?, May 22, 2018
In the memo, Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving, along with Chief Administrative Officer Phil Kiko, wrote, “We have concluded that the employees [Democratic systems administrator Imran Awan and his family] are an ongoing and serious risk to the House of Representatives, possibly threatening the integrity of our information systems and thereby members’ capacity to serve constituents.”
The memo “details how the caucus server, run by then-caucus Chairman Rep. Xavier Becerra, was secretly copied by authorities after the House Inspector General identified suspicious activity on it, but the Awans’ physical access was not blocked,” the report said.
The server “appears to have been secretly replaced with one that looked similar,” the report said.
The memo also called for firing the members of the Awan family working in the House IT department, revoking all their computer accounts, and changing the locks on any door they had access to.
Rep. Louie Gohmert, Texas Republican, said the missing server contained copies of Congress members’ emails.
“They put 40 members of Congress’s data on one server … That server, with that serial number, has disappeared,” he said.
The memo also itemizes “numerous and egregious violations of House IT security” by members of the Awan family, including using Congress members’ usernames and “the unauthorized storage of sensitive House information outside the House.”
“These employees accessed user accounts and computers for offices that did not employ them, without the knowledge and permission of the impacted Member’s office,” the memo said, adding, “4 of the employees accessed the Democratic Caucus computers 5,735 times.” More than 100 office computers were open to access from people not on the office’s staff, it said.
Chris Gowen – a former aide to Hillary Clinton who is now serving as Imran’s attorney – told the Daily Caller, “There is no missing server and never was.”
Gowen didn’t provide any support for his claim, which is contrary to evidence Kiko and Irving presented to Congress, the Daily Caller said.