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Memo reveals McMaster crackdown on leaks

The Hill logo The Hill 9/14/2017 Mallory Shelbourne
Memo reveals McMaster crackdown on leaks © Provided by The Hill Memo reveals McMaster crackdown on leaks

National security advisor H.R. McMaster in a memo to senior government officials urged them to warn agency employees against leaks of both classified and unclassified information, BuzzFeed News reported Wednesday.

The memo included the date of Sept. 8, the report said, and asked all government agencies to hold "a one-hour, organization-wide event" to review how to guard both classified information and some unclassified information.

"For those with access to classified information, a review of the non-disclosure agreement reminds us of the responsibilities that come with access to, and penalties for unauthorized disclosure of, classified information," the memo, which BuzzFeed obtained and posted, reads.

"However, it is equally important to discuss the importance of protecting controlled unclassified and personally identifiable information from unauthorized public disclosure."

News of the memo comes more than a month after Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a broad crackdown on leaks, a subject that has caught the ire of President Trump since he took office.

Trump has repeatedly taken to Twitter to vent his frustration about leaks coming from government agencies.

McMaster in the memo said the disclosing classified and some unclassified information "causes harm to our Nation and shakes the confidence of the American people."

"In this era of unprecedented unauthorized disclosures, it is important to take time to review with your workforce their roles and responsibilities in safeguarding United States Government information," the memo reads.

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