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White House: Computer hard drives tossed
AP on Yahoo ^ | 3/21/08 | Pete Yost - ap

Posted on 03/21/2008 7:37:36 PM PDT by NormsRevenge

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To: savedbygrace
- if the law says they have to archive the files, then they have to archive the files.

True, but there are limits to that. The law may specify how long the retention period is, allowing deletion thereafter. If it does not specify any retention period, then they must be archived forever.

If they were archived to magnetic tapes, the tapes will be readable for about 10 years and then start to deteriorate. They may not be readable after that. The tapes may have been recycled due to the increasing difficulty of getting high quality magnetic tape.

51 posted on 03/21/2008 10:10:53 PM PDT by 17th Miss Regt
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To: savedbygrace

It shouldn’t matter whether there’s a pubbie or a Dim in the WH - if the law says they have to archive the files, then they have to archive the files.

The article does offer this.. fwiw

“In the absence of a permanent archiving system, the White House has been archiving e-mails on White House servers since early in the administration.”

I can’t speak to the entirety but I do know that things do go bump in the night , even on well managed networks. (I may be making a leap that the workstations/computers affected are technically involved are all networked)

it may strike folks odd that standards today for retaining an archive for corporations is an automatic just to allow for proper discovery for any number of legal or other reasons, yet I don’t believe that same government does not currently require the same.

In fairness, technology can be a real bugger to blend in an environment like the federal or state government.

as to FR, I am not sure what legal requirement might apply for saving of data. I know I must have thousands of old mail still clogging up the servers but I believe we have that luxury by the design of the operators behind the scenes at the FR server farm.

as to others opinions, maybe some have bad experiences with email in general or see how it could be used as the basis of a witch hunt by either party .. when we have more important issues at hand to address.

as drudge is want to do sometimes..

developing ..


52 posted on 03/21/2008 10:12:03 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed ... ICE’s toll-free tip hotline —1-866-DHS-2-ICE ... 9/11 .. Never FoRGeT)
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To: NormsRevenge

If HUD could do it, the White House has no excuse. There’s no department more f-ed up than HUD.


53 posted on 03/21/2008 10:15:48 PM PDT by Content Provider
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To: NormsRevenge

btt


54 posted on 03/21/2008 10:32:24 PM PDT by markman46 (engage brain before using keyboard!!!)
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To: savedbygrace

Judge Facciolo and some background re: e-discovery

has some interesting comments albeit this particular instance is about searching for dat/information, however it may shed some light on the Judge’s attitude as well.

scroll down a ways and you will find a piece

Criminal Case Raises Interesting e-Discovery Search Issues

http://ralphlosey.wordpress.com/

a brief snippet..

Overall, in this opinion, Judge Facciola demonstrates a tolerance for the mistakes made by both sides, and a willingness to move on and look for practical solutions to the problem. Again, Alexander Pope said it well almost 300 years ago: “To err is human, to forgive divine.” Also recall Pope’s lesser known quote: “A man should never be ashamed to own that he is wrong, which is but saying in other words that he is wiser today than he was yesterday.”

That is an everyday reality in the fast changing world of e-discovery.


55 posted on 03/21/2008 10:43:01 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed ... ICE’s toll-free tip hotline —1-866-DHS-2-ICE ... 9/11 .. Never FoRGeT)
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The next piece at same link above also specifically mentions the WH scenario and email snafus in general..

e-Discovery Teams: Self-Organization and Development of Evidence Preservation Protocols
February 17, 2008
http://ralphlosey.wordpress.com/
The preservation of discoverable ESI in litigation is a core activity of any e-discovery team. It is also a key component of risk management. Obviously, if you do not preserve electronically stored information, and it is deleted, then you will never be able to find it or collect it, much less review and produce it. Just ask the Bush White House about that; they failed to preserve over five million emails. The whole nine-step e-discovery process depends upon proper preservation. So too does risk management. Unless you are the White House, your failure to preserve after notice is a sure road to sanctions. Risk control in e-discovery begins with the routine employment of effective litigation hold procedures. This is the best way to minimize the chance of inadvertent or intentional destruction of relevant electronic records.

This is a difficult task in the best of circumstances. Intel’s email preservation losses in the AMD antitrust case demonstrate that. Intel was trying to implement a very complex litigation hold procedure to preserve relevant evidence, but despite strong efforts by its team, it lost thousands of emails. The loss was caused by a number of mistakes, including design flaws in the notice and collection procedures, and the failure to suspend an automatic file deletion program for certain key witnesses. Spoliation was also caused by the simple human error of forgetting to look at a second tab of an Excel spreadsheet listing more key custodians.

fwiw


56 posted on 03/21/2008 10:47:17 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed ... ICE’s toll-free tip hotline —1-866-DHS-2-ICE ... 9/11 .. Never FoRGeT)
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To: RayChuang88
Actually, you need a program that “wipes” the drive completely clear to prevent people from snooping on the drive. I believe there are programs out there that allow you to rewrite every sector with a single type of data (government rules require you do re-write every sector three times).

Umm, data can be recovered after as many as thirty-five such rewrites.

In addition to the 16 pound sledge, I recommend a 50 gallon drum, a few gallons of diesel oil, a blow torch, and raking the resulting ashes through a gravel parking lot.

Of course, your actual mileage may vary.

From a National Security standpoint, I would prefer that the White House NOT have a state of the art email archive, backup, and retrieval system. That would be one h*ll of a target for our cyber enemies to exploit.

57 posted on 03/21/2008 11:02:17 PM PDT by Natty Bumppo@frontier.net ("The facts of life are conservative!" Margaret Thatcher)
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To: BuffaloJack
Even formatting the drive will not remove the files from a determined hacker. You have to physically destroy the drive.

That's not really true...A simple 0-write is sufficient, unless you have super critical data that someone with a couple million dollar lab really wants to get... Your average hacker isn't going to get anything off of a zero-written drive.

58 posted on 03/21/2008 11:21:25 PM PDT by roamer_1 (Conservative always, Republican no more.)
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To: Natty Bumppo@frontier.net
Umm, data can be recovered after as many as thirty-five such rewrites.

Umm, not really- I mean you might find a fragment or two, but unless there is really *really* important data, this is quite unnecessary. Few have the knowledge, and fewer have the resources to get that far. For the average Joe's data, and the average hacker (or even the lion's share of recovery services), there is *nothing* left after a zero-write.

In addition to the 16 pound sledge, I recommend a 50 gallon drum, a few gallons of diesel oil, a blow torch, and raking the resulting ashes through a gravel parking lot.

*rolls eyes*... If it is necessary to destroy a drive... coal fire. In 15 minutes there is nothing left. I defy you to get any information from one of my clinkers.

59 posted on 03/21/2008 11:57:47 PM PDT by roamer_1 (Conservative always, Republican no more.)
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To: Dick Vomer
what part of the hard drive is that "rare earth" magnet?

I did this in the days of full height drives, and I'm not sure that they are still used in the smaller drives of today. Thus, I don't exactly remember... but they were various shapes from different drives, an inch or two in length/height and perhaps 1/2" thick. Not sure how they were used exactly, which would be a clue to where in the drive you'd find them... but its gotta be near the stepping motor for the heads. I suspect they've been replaced in today's drives with electromagnets.

60 posted on 03/22/2008 2:56:42 AM PDT by C210N (The television has mounted the most serious assault on Republicanism since Das Kapital.)
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To: NormsRevenge

You misunderstood or I wasn’t clear. Back when the Clinton WH was embroiled in its lost Email messages scandal, most everyone here excoriated the Clintons, and rightly so. Now that a Republican administration has done the same, or a similar, thing, many are ready to give Bush & Co the benefit of the doubt.

FR ought to treat corruption, and the appearance of corruption, equally, no matter who the President is.

That’s the point.


61 posted on 03/22/2008 5:21:54 AM PDT by savedbygrace (SECURE THE BORDERS FIRST (I'M YELLING ON PURPOSE))
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To: sourcery

Keeps the lawyers busy I guess.


62 posted on 03/22/2008 5:37:02 AM PDT by mad_as_he$$ (John McCain - The Manchurian Candidate? http://www.usvetdsp.com/manchuan.htm)
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To: tubebender
It has happened before, during the Clinton Administration. What you have to determine is 1) was it an effort to hide something by one or more individuals in high ranking positions in the Administration or 2) was it part of the normal IT process as stated in the policy/procedure for maintenance and care of the equipment?

There's the rub. The House Dems don't care to get at the the truth. They have the same agenda as they've had over the last 7 years ... hate Bush, destroy him and his Presidency.
63 posted on 03/22/2008 6:28:55 AM PDT by K-oneTexas (I'm not a judge and there ain't enough of me to be a jury. (Zell Miller, A National Party No More))
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To: NormsRevenge

We do the same for many DOD hard drives. They don’t stand much of a chance against a 15 LB sledgehammer. Even less when you run over them with the track of an M1 or use them as targets for an .50 cal.

What’s really bad is when a server goes bad and they restore a backup that is several weeks or months old. You get emails that are old and have no idea what to do with them - its like “I know I’ve seen that before” and then you look at the original date.


64 posted on 03/22/2008 6:40:31 AM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (His middle name is NOT Hussein for being a Christian.)
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To: SpaceBar
The word “tossed...........

Just like the Clinton's “tossed” our Ballistic Missile technology to the Chinese.

65 posted on 03/22/2008 6:45:19 AM PDT by angcat (Indian name "She who yells too much")
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To: NormsRevenge

While they are at it, maybe they can take “H” off the keyboards. Works for Hillary or Hussein.


66 posted on 03/22/2008 6:58:06 AM PDT by Hat-Trick (Do you trust a government that cannot trust you with guns?)
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To: BuffaloJack
I thought that everyone destroyed their old hard drives. Any time I’ve ever gotten a new PC, I’ve first taken and transferred some of my stuff to the new PC, left all the old junk, clutter, and old emails on the old drive. I then remove the drive from the chassis, take it outside and whop it a half dozen times with a 16 pound sledge. I don’t want some trash picker taking my old PC chasis out of the trash on trash day and browsing through my old bills, documents, and personal stuff. Even formatting the drive will not remove the files from a determined hacker. You have to physically destroy the drive.

When I did some work at a government installation, I'll never forget how angry the manager was for having to sign off on a VERY expensive 20MB hard drive that the thought was going to be replaced under warranty, when I explained that if I didn't have a core to return to Compaq, he was going to be billed for a brand new 20MB drive from the service department, i.e. about 2x the price of buying a new one from a computer store. I offered to not do the service, but he needed the computer fixed right away, and since the computer was in a secured area of the installation, the original drive had to be hand carried to the metal shredder, and he had to watch it shredded, and sign an affidavit.

Today there are software packages that was securely "shred" your data. There are a number of good free ones that will keep most determined hackers from being able to recover any data, though shipping the drive to a data recovery house like OnTrack might be able to recover it. And if you're willing to pay for the software, you can get DOD certified data destruction. It's rumored that the "No Such Agency" can recover data once it's been wiped by DOD certified software, but nobody's saying for sure.

Mark

67 posted on 03/22/2008 7:42:38 AM PDT by MarkL
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To: roamer_1

Roamer,

LOL, I concur regarding your clinkers, I’ll have to try that next time.

I live and work in a world of “really” important data. And while the number of entities with the skill and resources are limited, you can get far more than “a fragment or two” from drives that have been given multiple zero-writes. For “really” important data, if you have physical possession of an intact drive, it is surprisingly cost-effective to recover the data.

As for the “average Joe’s data” there are numerous, low cost, very low tech, methods to get that data, some perfectly legal. You don’t need physical access to their hard drives.

I don’t consider data from the White House as “average Joe’s data.” While I have no, direct, personal experience with that organization, I suspect they, and our adversaries, might consider it to be “really” important data.


68 posted on 03/22/2008 9:01:38 AM PDT by Natty Bumppo@frontier.net ("The facts of life are conservative!" Margaret Thatcher)
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To: savedbygrace

Thanks for clarifying that.

yes the clintons were so good with records and such. (/sarc)

Stuff happens.. this is a sticky wicket as they say.


69 posted on 03/22/2008 9:59:38 AM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed ... ICE’s toll-free tip hotline —1-866-DHS-2-ICE ... 9/11 .. Never FoRGeT)
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To: savedbygrace

also, you may have read me as attempting to excuse the latest WH email issue by them producing those excerpts on e-discovery , the Judge, etc and seeking to defend the adminsitration.

that wasn’t my intent. I have been around technology along time and networks and such, it is not always a sstraight forward after the fact to retrieve some info no matter how well it has been backed up or archived.

altho, one ought to keep in mind how the dems would use this to actually try and make this an impeachable offense or claim the data was proof of lies lies lies about the conduct of the war by the WH and agencies under the WH.. etc.

I appreciate your comments on FR, but as a sidenote, I would also ask for as much concern may be raised over this, maybe we should also ask why we have allowed our primary process to become so corrupted and why that doesn’t receive near as much attention as it should as well, imo. That is a responsibility of all of us too.


70 posted on 03/22/2008 10:08:45 AM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed ... ICE’s toll-free tip hotline —1-866-DHS-2-ICE ... 9/11 .. Never FoRGeT)
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To: NormsRevenge

I agree, and I’ve posted a number of times about it.

I’ve attended Republican precinct and county-wide meetings, and found them to be controlled by the elites via Delphi techniques. And that’s in a small county in NE OK!

We are so close to losing this nation it just isn’t funny.


71 posted on 03/22/2008 10:15:51 AM PDT by savedbygrace (SECURE THE BORDERS FIRST (I'M YELLING ON PURPOSE))
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To: savedbygrace

You are not alone in sharing that last sentiment.


72 posted on 03/22/2008 10:28:03 AM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed ... ICE’s toll-free tip hotline —1-866-DHS-2-ICE ... 9/11 .. Never FoRGeT)
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To: Natty Bumppo@frontier.net
I live and work in a world of “really” important data.

As do I. I have recovered sensitive data, and conducted forensic examinations for industry, banking, and for government agencies.

[...] you can get far more than “a fragment or two” from drives that have been given multiple zero-writes. For “really” important data, if you have physical possession of an intact drive, it is surprisingly cost-effective to recover the data.

Please PM me with links to white papers or describe such methods. I have no means to recover meaningful data from a 0-written hdd, and neither do the two recovery houses that I do business with.

I am familiar with theories and methods to recover from either side of the "data stream" and have been successful at doing so using software/firmware (driver based) attempts, but the resulting data is so fragmentary as to be entirely useless. I know of no "soft" method to reliably recover data in that condition, but I am always willing to learn.

As for the “average Joe’s data” there are numerous, low cost, very low tech, methods to get that data, some perfectly legal. You don’t need physical access to their hard drives.

As I said, please PM me with such methods.

I don’t consider data from the White House as “average Joe’s data.”

Granted. My comment was toward the idea that the average Joe must use such methods for disposing a drive. "Dumpster diving" hackers looking for sensitive personal data from residential or SOHO boxen are not looking to recover data from a 0-written drive. They are looking for drives that have not been reformatted, or have been quick-formatted (hence leaving the data in an easily retrievable state).

Even so, the institutions, corporations, and governmental entities that I do business with have differing classes of data disposal. most drives are not critical.

I go by a 3 level system for simplicity. "Green" tagged drives contain no sensitive data, and can be 0-scrubbed off and used again. These are usually just sent to me (or I pick them up), as they trust that I will rub them off before using/reselling.

"Yellow" tagged drives contain sensitive data and must be government wiped in order to reuse the drive, though I am generally just destroying these anymore, as the time to run a gvt wipe is not worth the value of the drive.

"Red" tagged drives are doomed to destruction, as they carry super-critical data. Often times these drives are brought by a company rep who stands by to witness the drives being destroyed- Hence the need to develop an efficient means (stoker fed coal fire).

73 posted on 03/22/2008 12:15:15 PM PDT by roamer_1 (Conservative always, Republican no more.)
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