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Who do you think has been spying on a CBS reporter?

June 17, 2013 - Andrea Johnson
Here's yet another incident of someone spying on a reporter at home and at work.

CBS reporter Sharyl Attkissson, speaking this morning on CBS News, said that a forensic examination of her home and office computers showed that it had been subject to several remote searches by unidentified people in late 2012.

Attkisson said this morning that she noticed that something wasn't quite right about her home computer because it would turn on and off by itself during the night When CBS technical experts examined the computers, they found that the guilty party was sophisticated and highly skilled and had gone to great lengths to try to erase evidence of the searches. Attkisson was careful not to point fingers, but said she is "outraged" and she and CBS are "taking this seriously."

According to The National Review Online, Attkisson reported on both the attack on the American embassy in Benghazi and on the so-called "Fast and Furious" scandal, a controversial United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives sting operation. According to various reports, the ATF allowed legal gun dealers to sell guns to straw purchasers, who they hoped would sell them to Mexican drug cartels. The ATF hoped to use the operation to trace the guns and then make arrests of high level drug dealers. The operation apparently did not result in any high level arrests. However, some of the guns have been found at the scene of the murders of Mexican civilians, as well as at the scene of the murder of an ATF agent. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder was held in contempt of Congress in June 2012 over a dispute over release of documents related to the Operation Fast and Furious. National Review Online reports that Attkisson clashed with both the White House and the Department of Justice over her coverage of that story.

Last month, of course, it came out that the Department of Justice had subpoenaed the professional and personal phone records of more than 20 Associated Press reporters in an attempt to learn the source of a government leak. The AP President called this action unconstitutional last month on "Face the Nation." According to various reports, government officials also labeled FOX news reporter James Rosen a possible "co-conspirator" in the leaking of classified information in their request for a warrant to search Rosen's personal e-mail records. The government was trying to find the source of a leak.

It's not clear yet who the guilty party might be in the search of Attkisson's home and work computers, of course, but all of these incidents present a worrying pattern. A free society must have a free press and that is not possible if the government or other parties are permitted to search phone and e-mail records with impunity.

Who do you think is to blame for the spying on Attkisson?


Article Comments



Jun-23-13 5:03 PM

Andrea, way to stay on point with posters who refuse to live in the present.

It is disconcerting, to say the least, for reporters to have their computers hacked in what seems to be "retaliation" for doing their jobs.

Our society used to have some semblance of being free. It appears "1984" has arrived, 29 years late, but just as unsettling.


Jun-20-13 10:54 AM

I'm pretty sure Who is on first yet, maybe Who is on second though...


Jun-18-13 9:36 PM

The National Review said nothing about her reporting on stories during the Bush administration, but it did mention that she had clashed with both the Department of Justice and the White House over her reporting on the Fast and Furious operation. The hacking into her home and office computers also happened in late 2012. Bush hadn't been in office since 2008.


Jun-18-13 2:27 AM



Jun-17-13 3:07 PM

"Go and round up the usual suspects."


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