- The Washington Times - Saturday, December 7, 2019

President Trump told CNN late Friday to retract a report that alleges he continues to use a personal cell phone despite repeated warnings from his staff about the security risks.

“This is totally false information and reporting. I haven’t had a personal cell phone for years. Only use government approved and issued phones,” Mr. Trump said on Twitter. “Retract!”

CNN subsequently said it “stands by its reporting.”

Originally published online earlier Friday, CNN’s report said that Mr. Trump has continued to use his personal cell phone to make calls in spite of repeated security warnings about the likelihood of those conversations being intercepted by foreign intelligence services.

Mr. Trump has “continued to call people on a number he held since before his time in the White House,” CNN’s report said, including as recently as within the last several weeks.

Reports about Mr. Trump using unsecured cell phones rather than hardened government devices have existed throughout his administration, previously resulting in Democratic members of Congress voicing related concerns.

“This behavior is more than bad operational security — it is an egregious affront to national security,” a group of more than a dozen Democrats said within weeks of Mr. Trump taking office in 2017.

More recently, The New York Times reported in 2018 that Mr. Trump’s cellphone was “left behind in a golf cart” during a visit to his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, citing two people familiar with the incident. Mr. Trump reacted to that report at the time by calling it “fake news” and asserting he only uses government phones.

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