DHS opens criminal probe into deleted Secret Service texts from Jan. 6


The Secret Service can face serious legal repercussions over deleted text messages relating to the Attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2021. BNC News sources said the Department of Homeland Security’s inspector general has opened a criminal investigation into the removal of texts from the days surrounding the riot. The Secret Service has been ordered to halt its own internal investigations, according to a copy of a letter from DHS Deputy Inspector General Gladys Ayala sent to the agency.

In a statement, the Secret Service acknowledged receiving Ayala’s letter. He promised a “thorough legal review” to ensure he was “fully cooperative” with any scrutiny.

News of the removed texts came last week, when the Inspector General’s Office said the Secret Service texts from January 5 and 6 had been removed as part of a “device replacement program”. Agents were supposed to back up their messages before migration, but it’s not clear. While the Secret Service told the House Jan. 6 committee it was “not currently aware” of any lost messages, CNN reported, he also admitted that he was still trying to retrieve messages. The service did not provide more than one message thread in response to a House committee subpoena.

It is not yet clear if the messages are recoverable, and there is no known evidence of malicious intent. Regardless of the circumstances, it is possible that the Secret Service could face significant charges. House Committee Leaders Liz Cheney and Bennie Thompson warned that the service could have violated the Federal Records Act by not retaining the messages. If nothing else, the survey highlights the challenges and importance of data preservation in modern government – ​​a botched migration could impact crucial procedures.


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