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DoD's Deutch Review Finds No Security Compromise

By Linda D. Kozaryn
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Feb. 2, 2001 -- DoD officials have found no evidence John Deutch, former deputy defense secretary, compromised classified information, but they cannot rule out the possibility.

"While the possibility of compromise cannot be foreclosed with certainty, our analysts have found no evidence of compromise to date," a Jan. 19 DoD general counsel memorandum stated.

Pentagon officials released a redacted copy of the memorandum Feb. 1. DoD officials blacked out three segments of the memo because they contained either classified information or information protected by the Privacy Act, said Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. Craig Quigley.

Because computer technology is such a fast-moving field, Quigley noted, DoD officials couldn't guarantee there was no compromise. He said an "offense-defense" is "constantly in play" because "hackers and other ne'er-do-wells are constantly trying to defeat anti-viral protections that other people are putting in place."

Deutch, who left DoD to become CIA director, was accused of mishandling classified CIA materials while using government computers in his office and at home. DoD looked into whether he might have done the same while at the Pentagon. Prior to leaving office, former President Bill Clinton, granted Deutch a full pardon in connection with the case.

DoD conducted a three-pronged review of Deutch's use of computers while serving as deputy secretary from March 1994 to May 1995 and as undersecretary defense for acquisition and technology from April 1993 to March 1994.

DoD officials recovered and examined three laptop and four desktop computers Deutch used. Two of the laptops had been disposed of as excess property. They were retrieved from Florida A&M University. The third laptop, disposed of through the Defense Reutilization and Marketing Office, was evidently destroyed.

"No classified information was discovered on any computer or computer memory device currently in DoD's inventory or recovered by the acting inspector general's investigation," the memo stated.

DoD officials also reviewed 26 journals Deutch maintained during his tenure at DoD, detailing his daily official activities and some personal entries. The CIA had located these journals on three personal computer memory cards Deutch used to store and transfer data from various computers.

Although storing classified information on the cards may have been authorized, the general counsel said, the journal entries were worked on from Deutch's home computers, which was not authorized.

In examining the journals, DoD officials identified 47 potentially classified references to information identified as "Special Access Required." Of those, 14 contained information that continues to be considered SAR.

The rest do not contain classified information but "do refer to the existence of a DoD Special Access Program in a general technology area, link an individual to a SAP, or mention a SAP by nickname," the memo stated.

DoD officials also examined 17 journals Deutch maintained on the cards during his tenure as CIA director. Here they found 10 potentially classified entries. Six remain SAR; two refer to information no longer classified; and two do not contain classified information but do refer to DoD Special Access Programs.

A fourth memory card Deutch used from June 1995 through December 1996 revealed no classified material, the counsel general's memo said. Thousand of pages of pages of e-mail from Deutch's tenure at DoD and CIA revealed only one reference to classified material.

Source: Defenselink

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