China, Russia Eavesdropping on Trump's iPhone Calls, NYT Says

China, Russia Eavesdropping on Trump's iPhone Calls, NYT Says

President Donald Trump, as The New York Times referring to the former and current sources in the American special services. The official devices have been modified by the National Security Agency to limit their capabilities, but the personal phone where he can store contacts isn't, the paper said.

Trump's use of an ordinary phone is a defiance in the eyes of some officials given that Barack Obama fastidiously followed security protocol.

"I suggest they replace their phones with Huawei (Chinese mobile phone manufacturer) ones", Hua was cited as saying by Efe news.

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Trump also played down the reported threat by brushing it off on Twitter.

"The so-called experts on Trump over at the New York Times wrote a long and boring article on my cellphone usage that is so incorrect I do not have time here to correct it". "He has one official government iPhone". But aides say the voluble president, who has been pressured into using his secure White House landline more often these days, has still refused to give up his iPhones.

"The President does not have three cellular phones", Gidley said in the statement.

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"American spy agencies, the officials said, had learned that China and Russian Federation were eavesdropping on the president's cellphone calls from human sources inside foreign governments and intercepting communications between foreign officials", the daily said.

Trump uses the phones to speak to "old friends", and domestic spy agencies have determined China is seeking to use information from the calls to keep a trade war with the US from escalating, the paper said, citing unidentified current and former USA officials. His move comes at a time when the United States economy has been growing robustly while Chinese growth has slowed, adding to the pressure on Beijing. "White House officials say they can only hope he refrains from discussing classified information when he is on them", the news agency reports.

By identifying friends of Trump who rely on Chinese business, the strategy is to "feed arguments" via these individuals in an effort to deliver a Beijing's views through trusted mouthpieces, according to the report. The main concern is phone No. 3, which is a standard iPhone no different from the millions taking selfies outside the White House each year.

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"If you are speaking on an open line, then it's an open line, meaning those who have the ability to monitor those conversations are doing so", Derek Chollet, a former Pentagon adviser and National Security Council told the Associated Press in 2017 report.

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