Patterico's Pontifications

6/14/2014

Lois Lerner Emails Were Archived

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:40 pm

The testimony is on video.

Oh, also, this:

And this:

Alternatively, I guess you could get them from the NSA. They have everything, right?

104 Responses to “Lois Lerner Emails Were Archived”

  1. Ding.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  2. Tell us something we don’t already know. Still, it is nice to hear the truth for a change. Not from you, Pat – from “them”.

    felipe (960c75)

  3. I always trust content from PP.

    felipe (960c75)

  4. A Congressman has written the NSA asking it to turn over information it has about emails between Lerner and outside groups between January 2009 and April 2011. I doubt it will comply but maybe the NSA will have to say whether or not it has the emails.

    David (8c79bc)

  5. I can tell you, right now, what the NSA’s response will be: A politically embarrassing (damning?) email that Stockman sent in the past will be sent to him in private. And that (as they say) will be that.

    felipe (960c75)

  6. I’m not jaded./dirntst?

    felipe (960c75)

  7. The only thing that would work would be to jail Lerner and make her sing. That is, if Cryin J B had any stones.

    Gazzer (6a76d0)

  8. Having worked at Outlook/Exchange sites, even webmail goes through a company server (either the corporate one or a contracted provider) and those emails should also be archived on said server. That an organization as anal as the IRS would not archive everything is beyond belief.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  9. That is, if Cryin J B had any stones.

    Between this and the Cantor thing, he may be growing a pair about now. Either that, or he’s saying goodbye to what little he has.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  10. I’m not exactly an IT guy, but I do know that any large organization has email servers that are backed up, usually on a daily basis. There is really no reason to ask the NSA, because the IRS is lying.

    Even if you accept the lie that her hard drive crashed, for goodness sake, there are plenty of resources that can recover lost files.

    Regardless, her emails are readily available because, you know, email servers.

    The lying liars are just doing what lying liars usually do because they think they are the smartest kids on the block.

    Ag80 (eb6ffa)

  11. “We will neither confirm nor deny that we have copies of the requested documents.”

    htom (412a17)

  12. Kevin, I remember Lilly Tomlin’s parody of an AT&T telephone operator’s behavior which ended with her looking at the viewer (audience) and saying(my paraphrase)”Screw you, we’re the phone company”! Little did she know that she picked the wrong (or perhaps she knew better) target.

    felipe (960c75)

  13. 8. Kevin M (b357ee) — 6/14/2014 @ 9:06 pm

    That an organization as anal as the IRS would not archive everything is beyond belief

    It’s believeable, if Lois Lerner wasn’t the only person at the IRS who wanted to cover things up.

    So now they say only approximately the last 1,800 e-mails were saved on the server, raised in July, 2011 to 6,000, and employees could delete e-mails from the server to make room for more. And/or they could archive older mail on their own hard disks.

    Sammy Finkelman (97c2e3)

  14. “Between this and the Cantor thing, he may be growing a pair about now. Either that, or he’s saying goodbye to what little he has”.

    Yeah, he is saying goodbye.

    felipe (960c75)

  15. When was the last time anybody here experienced a hard disk crash?

    Sammy Finkelman (97c2e3)

  16. Sammy — a couple of months ago, less than a year.

    Users may well have been able to delete emails, but that doesn’t delete them from the backups.

    htom (412a17)

  17. What is needed is someone to rat them out. Butterfield did that with Watergate.

    Mike K (cd7278)

  18. Subpoena every help desk request, IT logs, and bring in every tech that worked on it.

    JD (ea1128)

  19. That is a good idea, JD. Too bad it will never occur to “them”.

    felipe (960c75)

  20. I didn’t do a good job linking this video yesterday. I did a poor job.

    JD (ea1128)

  21. And yet you are held in high regard, JD. Could we have done better?

    felipe (960c75)

  22. 15. When was the last time anybody here experienced a hard disk crash?
    Sammy Finkelman (97c2e3) — 6/14/2014 @ 9:14 pm

    I’ve had hard drive crashes a couple of times. Once I was able to recover most of the data, but I had to pay a company something like $600 and I got nearly all of my data back. The problem was it wasn’t in any sort decipherable format (a random series of numbers, then the extension .txt or .doc), so I had to go document by document, email by email, to discover what I had. The next time I had learned and periodically saved everything to disc, so I didn’t bother.

    Steve57 (5f0260)

  23. Sammy, that is a good question. my answer is: I have never experienced a disc crash.

    felipe (960c75)

  24. “hard disk crash”.

    felipe (960c75)

  25. I have a question for the lawyers, barristers, solicitors, ambulance chasers, and hired guns.

    1.15.6.7 (06-01-2010)
    Judicial Use of Electronic Records

    1. Electronic records may be admitted in evidence to federal courts for use in court proceedings if trustworthiness is established by thoroughly documenting the recordkeeping system’s operation and the controls imposed upon it [Federal Rules of Evidence 803(8)]. IRS offices should implement the following procedures to enhance the legal admissibility of electronic records:

    A. Document that similar kinds of records generated and stored electronically are created by the same processes each time and have a standardized retrieval approach;

    B. Verify that security and audit procedures prevent unauthorized addition, modification, or deletion of a record and ensure system protection against such problems as power interruptions;

    C. Identify the electronic media on which records are stored throughout their life cycle, the maximum time span that records remain on each storage medium, and the NARA-approved disposition of all records; and

    D. Coordinate all of the above with Counsel, the IRS Records Officer and senior IRM and records management staff.

    How could the IRS possibly use electronic records such as emails as evidence in court given the haphazard way the IRS commissioner wants us to believe they handle emails. There is no way, if it’s up to each individual to store emails on their own PC, that they can establish the trustworthiness of those records. You can’t prove it hasn’t been altered if we’re supposed to believe that it resides for years only on an individual’s desk top computer.

    Did the IRS just screw itself when it takes plaintiffs to court to collect from them?

    Steve57 (5f0260)

  26. Well, the IRS could claim that documents regarding taxpayer’s dispute matters are handled differently than those of internal documentation that do not impact a particular taxpayer’s matter of dispute, because of this very requirement — those are not documents that are expected to be produced for the courts.

    htom (412a17)

  27. Steve, comment #26 is just a glimpse of what the IRS could do. Do you need more. Or are you done?

    felipe (960c75)

  28. Steve, I am on your side! not snarking at all.

    felipe (960c75)

  29. If we cannot admit the enemy has the high ground, then what are we saying?

    felipe (960c75)

  30. If her emails reeeeeeeally mattered, it would be a simple matter to go to the drives for those we know she had contact. Simply filter for her known IP. Anything from/to that location would be found. If those drives were erased? Do the same for the servers to which those drives were connected.

    Bottom line – those files exist on her servers and her contacts’ servers.

    Now that more than enough probable cause for conspiracy exists, it is time to go after the other entities with whom she dealt. Reconstructing her emails is just the ticket for a search warrant.

    Ed from SFV (3400a5)

  31. They could claim that, but it wouldn’t fly.

    An e-mail message is a record if:

    a. it documents the IRS mission or provides evidence of an IRS business transaction,

    b. it can be retrieved if you, or anyone else, need to find out what had been done, or

    c. it can be used in other official actions.

    Treat e-mail messages the same way you would treat paper correspondence.

    Every single one of the emails the House oversight committee subpoenaed needed to be treated in exactly the same way as an email dealing with an individual taxpayer dispute. There is no special distinction made for email correspondence dealing with an individual taxpayer dispute.

    If the IRS can’t be trusted to produce electronic records for one official actions, i.e. to comply with Congressional oversight proceedings, then it can’t be trusted to produce electronic records for any official action.

    Steve57 (5f0260)

  32. The lies just keep getting more and more bold.

    askeptic (8ecc78)

  33. felipe @27 & 28, yes I understand what you’re saying. But in order to establish the trustworthiness of electronic records for judicial proceedings they have to “[v]erify that security and audit procedures prevent unauthorized addition, modification, or deletion of a record and ensure system protection against such problems as power interruptions.”

    If their security is so poor that a simple computer crash can wipe out two years worth of emails then there is no way they can establish the trustworthiness of any emails of any sort. And that calls the integrity of all their electronic records into question.

    Steve57 (5f0260)

  34. Peter Kastner is a technology blogger who’s “experience with federal email and records management began with the Ronald Reagan White House in 1982.”

    He confirms that what the IRS is claiming about losing Lois Lerner’s emails is simply not possible.

    http://peterskastner.wordpress.com/2014/06/14/irs-loses-lois-lerner-emails/

    I’m not going to steal it, so you can go to the link and read why that is. But he makes a couple of points I’ve touched on.

    Hard drives are the weak-link in IT installations. These mechanical devices fail at the rate of about 5% a year. With 90,000 employees, that works out to an average of 4,500 a year or 22 per work day. The IRS IT staff is very familiar with the consequences of user-PC hard drive failures. Data center storage management is another leaf in the same book.

    No one seriously believes this, but if the IRS allows agents to store their correspondence on their PCs where a hard drive crash can wipe out years of correspondence then there is no way the IRS could establish that their electronic records are sufficiently trustworthy to be used in judicial proceedings or any other official action. Their own instruction cites power failure as one problem their storage and retrieval system has to protect against, but so are hard drive failures.

    With a 5% annual failure rate, industry-wide PC backup strategies are as old as centralized email. There should be Lerner PC backups made by IRS IT. Leave it up to the user to make backups? No organization the size of the IRS allows that for all the obvious reasons that come to mind, starting with it doesn’t work in practice.

    Corporations and agencies that are legally required to retain official records and must be able to prove that no individual was able to delete, modify, or add any records into the system just don’t leave this up to the individual employee.

    Steve57 (5f0260)

  35. michelle obama our first lunch lady says the importantest thing is none of the irs emails had any fast-burning carbs as attachments and the majority of the ones she’s seen have been almost entirely vegan

    so wtf are you people on about

    you’re embarrassing yourselves

    almost. entirely. vegan.

    get it together

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  36. That heifer moochelle, has put all the school vending machine owners out of business.
    What a fricken carp.

    mg (31009b)

  37. This entire episode is a set up and lots and lots of folks are falling into the pit.

    First, the IRS folks are not lying. They could not, in fact, recovery what did not go through their servers.

    READ THIS (please?):
    http://www.wcpo.com/news/political/house-oversight-committee-louis-lerner-used-personal-email-for-irs-business

    Key Administration people have been shown to use personal/private email accounts to circumvent the date archiving laws. Start with the EPA, then just follow the trails. The fact she sent material to a “Lois Home” email account is proof enough she was using at least one non-IRS account.

    Consider:
    1. Federal IT folks are NOT stupid, dumb, incompetent or bumblers.
    2. It is inconceivable the Federal IT workers did not properly run their email system.
    3. The email systems of the period (2008 ffwd) are not difficult to set up.
    4. The IRS email system were likely set up and/or assisted in being set up by contractors
    5. Federal employees, if anything, go to extraordinary lengths to avoid blame – for anything.
    6. The IRS IT folks likely know the Federal laws/regs better than anyone, especially those reading this.
    7. There is one, and only one, reason for the IRS IT folks to be sniffing her computer — see the request for her private emails which would only be available on her home computer.

    Read the reporting very closely. The IRS never, ever said they could not provide emails sent through their email system. Every report leaps to this, imho, false, conclusion “..all emails Lerner sent during that period from her official IRS account to anybody outside the agency have vanished…”. (Washington Examiner). Actually, they said they could produce emails Lerner “largely from files of the other 82 individuals”. Largely?

    This will dribble out. Eventually, the issue will become a “privacy” one coupled with Lerner’s Fifth plea. The IRS may well produce, maybe even selectively, Lerner emails from 2009-20011 archived on their systems. Eventually, perhaps in November after the elections, the IRS will advises the Congress the hard disk crash destroyed her personal/private emails the Committee had requested.

    cedarhill (e6c823)

  38. Hi all. This is your friendly Microsoft Exchange tech guy. I worked for Microsoft, and would be happy to tell you why the IRS is lying to Congress. Blatently lying. And badly lying.

    No, Lois Lerner’s emails are not “lost” and certainly they’re not lost because her workstation hard drive crashed.

    This is because her email isn’t stored on her workstation hard drive (yes, even if she used Outlook Web Access to send or receive an email.)

    IRS data retention is done every day. Multiple backups occur every day of the Exchange databases and these are archived off-site. In point of fact, all email inbound to IRS Exchange servers is archived prior to it being made available to the user or stored in the Exchange databases. The user has no power to delete emails, and they are not stored on user workstations. Any attempt to delete emails would be evidence of an intention to commit obstruction of justice (even though that attempt would fail.)

    If Lerner was using some other email system, that of course would be illegal, and also pointless, as all other email systems are beyond her control and none of them store mail locally either.

    I’d be glad to answer any questions you, or the Congress, might have about IRS email. I could get these emails in 24 hours, no problem, should Congress decide they really want these emails.

    Congress probably doesn’t really want these emails, by the way. Congress has an interest in preserving the conceit that we, as a country, can trust the IRS. We can’t.

    ExchangeITAdmin (84ecc5)

  39. Right on, ExchangeITAdmin. The last thing anybody in Washington wants is to interfere with the collection of taxes.

    nk (dbc370)

  40. How did the FBI complete its investigation [led by Obama donor Barbara Kay Bosserman - and which Obama touted as demonstrating not a "smidgen of corruption"] into the IRS in January of this year without 2 years of Lerner’s e-mails?

    Did the investigation include looking into the 1.1 million pages of material containing legally protected taxpayer information that shouldn’t have been sent to the FBI, but was [a fact we didn't learn about until June of this year]?

    I don’t ask these as rhetorical questions. Either the cover-up includes the FBI, or the FBI investigation was, by explicit direction, extraordinarily limited – which is further evidence of a cover-up.

    Walter Cronanty (d16f1a)

  41. chaffetz is great, superb, but any chance overall milquetoast-level response by the House to this scandal and all the scandals got Eric Cantor?

    ParisParamus (c89017)

  42. “The last thing anybody in Washington wants is to interfere with the collection of taxes.”

    The IRS isn’t primarily a tax collection agency. Most tax collection is done by busiensses before anybody gets a paycheck or walks out of a store. That’s why we have withholding.

    The IRS is primarily a spy agency. Harry Reid, you’ll remember, informed Americans that Mitt Romney hadn’t paid any taxes for 10 years prior to running for President. He lost, as you’ll recall. Where do you think Harry Reid got that information? He got it from the IRS. That’s where he got it.

    ExchangeITAdmin (84ecc5)

  43. The GOP has a chance to meet Conservatives in compromise by pushing flat tax(or TBD) and abolishing the IRS.

    Master Ryan, pull yer head out.

    gary gulrud (46ca75)

  44. R.I.P. Casey Kasem

    Icy (48d2a0)

  45. 43.ExchangeITAdmin (84ecc5) — 6/15/2014 @ 6:49 am

    The IRS isn’t primarily a tax collection agency. Most tax collection is done by busiensses before anybody gets a paycheck or walks out of a store. That’s why we have withholding.

    And what do you think that the businesses do with the money wothheld?

    They send it to the IRS. Or the IRS goes after them.

    The IRS is primarily a spy agency. Harry Reid, you’ll remember, informed Americans that Mitt Romney hadn’t paid any taxes for 10 years prior to running for President. He lost, as you’ll recall. Where do you think Harry Reid got that information? He got it from the IRS.

    He pretended he got it from someone connected with Bain – as if there was some reason somebody connected to Bain would know – but, in reality, he made it up – or rather maybe some political consultant working to re-elect Obama made it up.

    That’s where he got it.

    Hs claim wasn’t true, but it forced Mitt Romney to release some recent tax returns he hadn’t wanted to release, and the Democrats went looking for some political ammunition there, but they didn’t really find any.

    Sammy Finkelman (97c2e3)

  46. 43. “And what do you think that the businesses do with the money wothheld?”

    Uh, Sam, everyone, and I do mean everyone, knows this. Please do not comment without thought.

    You disrespect us.

    gary gulrud (46ca75)

  47. “And what do you think that the businesses do with the money withheld? They send it to the IRS.”

    Actually, no. They send it to the Department of the Treasury, not to the IRS.

    My point is that the IRS isn’t primary a tax collection agency. Businesses collect income taxes, and remit them to the Treasury Department. Businesses collect sales taxes, and remit those as well. That is the bulk of taxes paid in the United States (businesses themselves pay virtually nothing in taxes, seeing as how they write the tax code through the use of lobbyists who ensure businesses such as Apple, et. al pay no federal taxes on their profits, which they keep offshore in tax havens.)

    The IRS is a spying organization. They’re duty isn’t to collect taxes, but to understand who is paying them and how they’re earning a living, so that this information can fraudulently be used by folks like Harry Reid to swing Presidential elections.

    I’d remind you that the IRS is lying to the Congress about Lois Lerner’s “lost” emails, and obstructing justice. Let’s focus on how we got to this point in our society where the IRS can just in-your-face lie directly to the Congress in the furtherance of a conspiracy to obstruct justice (a federal felony) and have apparently the foreknowledge that they can get away with these crimes.

    ExchangeITAdmin (84ecc5)

  48. When was the last time anybody here experienced a hard disk crash?

    In 2004 I had a disk crash that wiped out a year’s worth of email on my home computer.

    As a result I got a serious backup program and now all critical files are backed up daily to 1) a second disk on the same machine; 2) another disk on another machine; and a remote file (now in the cloud). Other, more static files are backed up weekly. From time to time I burn a blu-ray. I am certain that, short of a Carrington Event, I will not suffer that kind of data loss again.

    I would hope that the IRS has put at least as much thought into it.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  49. The lying liars are just doing what lying liars usually do because they think they are the smartest kids on the block.

    They think they can get away with it.

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  50. A hard disk crash alone does not wipe out the information on the drive. It is still recoverable. The data must be overwritten. What they are claiming is complete and utter bs!

    I’m sure a certain commenter here will give some fatuous excuse for this criminal behavior.

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  51. Free translation of the IRS message: “Scr*w you, Congress. You’re never getting those e-mails.”

    creeper (359265)

  52. Hey, Mr ExchangeITGuy-

    It was said that webmail would not go through the server, but my experience is that Exchange webmail is also archived by the organization, although perhaps by a separate vendor.

    Further, if an organization wanted to prevent use of msn, hotmail, yahoo, aol, or other 3rd party webmail to bypass their servers, would that be fairly easy to do, at least to thwart the average user?

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  53. I admit that the banana-republic-ization of the US has altered my own attitudes about things like the IRS over the past few years.

    I once had a more prim and proper reaction towards the issue of the American taxpayer and how he or she should be above board — be somewhat of a goody-two-shoes — regarding the IRS.

    For example, it wasn’t too many years ago when an accountant who works extensively with clients dealing with the IRS sputtered to me at how dishonest and incompetent they were. I recall being a bit skeptical about his perceptions at the time, thinking that perhaps he was like a student who instead of saying he was too lazy or forgetful to do a class assignment, tells the teacher, “hey, my dog ate my homework.”

    I don’t think my reaction would have been similar if someone were complaining to me about the local DMV office or perhaps any other government bureaucracy, so why I gave more latitude to the IRS in the past truly is puzzling to me, now more than ever before.

    I recall having some auto body work done over 10 years ago and the technicians wanted it to be a pure cash transaction, pretty much so they could avoid reporting the income to the IRS. They offered me a good rate, so my wariness and slight disquiet about the ethics of the situation were pushed aside. In today’s era, I would be far, far less wary, and feel way, way less disquiet.

    I now realize just how naive and gullible I’ve been.

    And I’m not even factoring in the way that all the “undocumented” pouring through the border — who are hugged and stroked by the type of people who’ve helped make the IRS so big, corrupt and greedy — have long lived in an under-the-table world. Or all the people in the leftwing world of the Obama administration — much less its previous Secretary of the Treasury — or even at the IRS itself who reportedly owe lots of money to Uncle Sam, via the IRS.

    Mark (75db68)

  54. “If an organization wanted to prevent use of msn, hotmail, yahoo, aol, or other 3rd party webmail to bypass their servers, would that be fairly easy to do, at least to thwart the average user?”

    It would be extremely trivial to set up a local area network that did not allow surfing to Hotmail, GMail, etc. How do you think they block porn surfing? Firewalls with content filters prevent employees from using illegitimate websites. That, plus it’s a felony to conspire to get around FOIA laws.

    Folks … the IRS is simply lying to Congress, because they believe they can. They’re confident that Eric Holder will not appoint an independent counsel to investigate, because of course Eric Holder is himself furthering the conspiracy to obstruct justice.

    It remains to be seen whether the Congress will use the powers that Congress has to compel testimony and bring these bureaucrats to heel. Congress has the power to impeach a sitting Attorney General who is acting in a conspiracy to obstruct justice.

    ExchangeITAdmin (84ecc5)

  55. From Peter Kastner:

    http://peterskastner.wordpress.com/2014/06/14/irs-loses-lois-lerner-emails/

    How could Lois Lerner do her work? The hard drive was lost and there were no PC backups. Besides losing two years worth of emails, GS-15 department head Lerner had to also lose all the data of a digital business life: calendar; contacts; personnel notes; work-in-process plans, schedules, meeting notes, reviews, budget spreadsheets, official IRS rulings.

    I notice that the IRS doesn’t seem to give the exact date pf the disk crash. So maybe it was restored from a back-up.

    Maybe the disk “crashed” because she didn’t have e-mails stored there that she was supposed to. In July, 2011, evidently, the IRS changed some of its email archiving procedures, because that’s when the quantity of e-mails stored on the central server went from approximately1 1,600 to approximately 6,000. The crash is supposed to have happeneds in “mid-2011.” There were still e-mails going back to April on the server, and they were not deleted after July or so.

    Let’s say they kept the original disk, but only went to recover fles from it a year or more later.

    Sammy Finkelman (97c2e3)

  56. Sammy, as ExhangeITAdmin has explained, her local drive doesn’t contain her emails, the email servers hold them remotely. If your computer crashed, you can still get your yahoo/gmail emails as long as you have access to the internet. What they are claiming is a lie—PERIOD!

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  57. Hadoop (f7d5ba) — 6/15/2014 @ 9:14 am

    If your computer crashed, you can still get your yahoo/gmail emails as long as you have access to the internet. What they are claiming is a lie—PERIOD!

    Or a deliberate faulure to look outside the IRS because that’s not covered by the subpoena.

    Sammy Finkelman (97c2e3)

  58. “Folks … the IRS is simply lying to Congress, because they believe they can. They’re confident that Eric Holder will not appoint an independent counsel to investigate, because of course Eric Holder is himself furthering the conspiracy to obstruct justice.”

    ^^^THIS^^^

    Above all, this.

    creeper (359265)

  59. Or a deliberate faulure to look outside the IRS because that’s not covered by the subpoena.

    The emails belong to the government. Since the IRS is a government agency, any subpoena requesting emails from the IRS would have to be covered, i.e., there is no outside.

    I guess I understand how appealing your “devil’s advocate” approach to nearly every thread is, but in this case, it makes no sense.

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  60. A thought… Maybe teh IRS removed Carbonite off of all their computers in response to that company pulling its advertising off of Rush Limbaugh’s program during teh slut Fluke kerfuffle?

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  61. 61. That is ajoke, but it doesn’t fit the timeline anyway.

    The Lois Lerner disk crash, or “crash,” happened sometime around the summer of 2011.

    The Sandra Fluke kerfuffle happened February 23-March 2012, with Limbaugh first mentioning her on February 29.

    Sammy Finkelman (97c2e3)

  62. From Da Tech Guy:

    http://datechguyblog.com/2014/06/15/the-irs-crosses-the-anthony-weiner-line/

    The biggest problem for Weiner and his defenders on the left is not bloggers from the right. It’s the details of “#weinergate” can be understood by millions of ordinary people in 140 characters or less.

    You can’t have “plausible deniability” when even non-political people know your story is BS.

    And as of today that’ where the IRS scandal story is.

    …30 years ago there were enough people who had not worked in a job that involved e-mail or in a college with an e-mail server or worked in a government job where regular backups were a fact of life, likewise recovery software was rare or nonexistent.

    Today those jobs are common & recovery applications are downloadable free of charge on the net..

    That means everyday ordinary people who have no interest in anything political can grasp that what the IRS is claiming is bogus even if they don’t read The Blaze’s piece by an IT pro explaining how this is simply not feasible

    He goes on to link to a couple of left leaning sites that say yes this stinks. This looks like a cover up. It should be investigated.

    As I understand it, For the IRS story to be true then not only would have Lois Lerner’s hard drive have to crash in such a way the data is unrecoverable (?!?!), but someone would have had to have deleted those emails from the servers. The multiple copies that would have been on the servers. Now, perhaps there’s a legitimate reason for this. The IRS’s own manual explains one of the criteria the agency has to meet in order to establish the trustworthiness of their electronic records for judicial use:

    http://www.irs.gov/irm/part1/irm_01-015-006.html#d0e696

    Identify the electronic media on which records are stored throughout their life cycle, the maximum time span that records remain on each storage medium, and the NARA-approved disposition of all records; and

    So, maybe somebody made an honest mistake and deleted records that should have remained on the server’s discs along with records that had reached the time limit.

    No problem, just retrieve the data from the backup tapes. Then they’d have to find the data on the backup tapes had been corrupted somehow. That for the entire two year period the data had been written to tape wrong, and no one found out.

    I don’t know anybody in IT who finds this chain of events remotely possible. If a private company subject to federal records keeping requirements had found out that their IT department was running this badly, they’d refer the matter to law enforcement for a criminal investigation. And, just to sound like a broken record, the IRS could not remotely establish that their electronic records can be used in court. As a matter of fact, as Andy McCarthy observes at NRO, they’d be required by law to inform courts, FOIA inquirers, and Congress that they’ve lost years worth of emails as soon as they discovered the loss. Which they hadn’t.

    This reminds me of Susan Rice and the video lie after Benghazi. Anybody who had been in the military and was familiar with OPREPS or Troops In Contact reporting knew she was lying about the video. But then only about 1% of the population joins the military to begin with, and then when you eliminate all those who don’t work in specialties where that’s required, we’re talking about a very small fraction of a percent of the population.

    This is different. IT touches everybody’s lives.

    Steve57 (5f0260)

  63. “That is ajoke, but it doesn’t fit the timeline anyway.”

    Sammy… they’ve distorted space AND time, that’s how deep teh conspiracy runs…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  64. 60. Hadoop (f7d5ba) — 6/15/2014 @ 9:30 am

    The emails belong to the government. Since the IRS is a government agency, any subpoena requesting emails from the IRS would have to be covered, i.e., there is no outside.

    They are covered by the subpoena, but are they required to ask her correspondents outside the IRS if they have any copies of any e-mails she sent to them? I mean, supposing, they are not really interested in helping the committee’s investigation.

    Sammy Finkelman (97c2e3)

  65. The VA had a terribly big conpspiracy. At least 3/4 of all VA hospitals were falsifying wait time records. (the IG had at least one informant that is, in that percentage of hospitals)

    A more complete report was released after the Bergdahl exchange. They released a preliminary report after Memorial Day and and ginned up the resignation of Shinseki between that and announcing the Bergdahl for 5 Guantamano detainees exchange.

    Sammy Finkelman (97c2e3)

  66. 55. “If an organization wanted to prevent use of msn, hotmail, yahoo, aol, or other 3rd party webmail to bypass their servers, would that be fairly easy to do, at least to thwart the average user?”

    It would be extremely trivial to set up a local area network that did not allow surfing to Hotmail, GMail, etc. How do you think they block porn surfing? Firewalls with content filters prevent employees from using illegitimate websites. That, plus it’s a felony to conspire to get around FOIA laws.

    Folks … the IRS is simply lying to Congress, because they believe they can. They’re confident that Eric Holder will not appoint an independent counsel to investigate, because of course Eric Holder is himself furthering the conspiracy to obstruct justice.

    It remains to be seen whether the Congress will use the powers that Congress has to compel testimony and bring these bureaucrats to heel. Congress has the power to impeach a sitting Attorney General who is acting in a conspiracy to obstruct justice.

    ExchangeITAdmin (84ecc5) — 6/15/2014 @ 8:56 am

    It’s also a felony to disclose confidential taxpayer information. Which is why Lois Lerner broke the law when she sent 1.1 million taxpayer records to the DoJ so they could dig through them on a fishing expedition (further evidence that ExchangeITAdmin is correct when he says the IRS is primarily a spy agency).

    If there is one agency that can not use a webmail application it is the IRS.

    Getting back to IRS spying, I’ve been saying for over a year now that anyone who is worried about the NSA is barking up the wrong tree. The NSA would have to break laws in order to misuse the data they collect.

    The law allows the IRS to monitor every aspect of your life to ensure compliance with the tax laws. They aren’t breaking any laws when they monitor all your online financial transactions, ebay purchases, credit card transactions, cell phone metadata, etc, looking for indications of unreported income. After all, you might be living a lifestyle beyond what you could support on your income as reported on 1040.

    You know, the one you signed under penalty of perjury, giving away your fifth amendment rights.

    This is why they monitor PPACA compliance. Health insurance coverage has nothing to do with taxes, but as ETA points out, neither does the IRS, really.

    http://news.investors.com/print/ibd-editorials-verbatim/062513-661264-obamacare-database-hub-creates-privacy-nightmare.aspx

    Think NSA Spying Is Bad? Here Comes ObamaCare Hub

    Steve57 (5f0260)

  67. They are covered by the subpoena, but are they required to ask her correspondents outside the IRS if they have any copies of any e-mails she sent to them? I mean, supposing, they are not really interested in helping the committee’s investigation.

    I’ll have to assume you mean there needs to be a separate subpoena for WH, DOJ, etc. servers. Doesn’t matter. At this point, the investigation, as with any other investigation, cannot and will not, conclude prior to ∅ leaving office.

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  68. Hadoop (f7d5ba) — 6/15/2014 @ 10:27 am

    I’ll have to assume you mean there needs to be a separate subpoena for WH, DOJ, etc. servers. Doesn’t matter.

    You need a list of her correspndents and you need to subpoena everybody.

    Sammy Finkelman (97c2e3)

  69. —So now they say only approximately the last 1,800 e-mails were saved on the server, raised in July, 2011 to 6,000, and employees could delete e-mails from the server to make room for more. And/or they could archive older mail on their own hard disks.

    Sammy, its a lie. A despicable lie. You should stop and think about what you are saying.

    Congress should have who ever said these emails were lost testify before them, then immediately confine them for contempt of Congress and refer them to the DOJ for perjury prosecution. (I know, I know).

    red (ac28a9)

  70. felipe (#12):
    I’m too lazy to spend the necessary 30 seconds looking it up, but I recall Lily Tomlin’s line as “We don’t care, we don’t have to: we’re the phone company.” Less crude than “screw you” linguistically, but maybe even cruder psychologically.

    Dr. Weevil (238692)

  71. I unsuccessfully tried to find the famous scene where a woman in the crowd yelled, “You lie!” to Ceausescu.

    I guess we had that once at a SOTU, but it didn’t catch on.
    I’m not at all suggesting an outcome like with Ceausescu, but the realization needs to take hold.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  72. How likely are nefarious emails to be in normal IRS emails system? They will “find” Lerner’s emails, and they will be innocuous. The real exchanges are on some hidden gmail or hotmail account.

    ParisParamus (c89017)

  73. 73. ParisParamus (c89017) — 6/15/2014 @ 7:34 pm

    How likely are nefarious emails to be in normal IRS emails system? They will “find” Lerner’s emails, and they will be innocuous. The real exchanges are on some hidden gmail or hotmail account.

    She could make a few mistakes, and also maybe not care if she thought communication was done in a way that could not be read by others, but she was wrong.

    A “crash” that was not a real accident, if this occurred, could indicate that maybe there was something to be revealed. At least clues.

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  74. I have 31 years of experience in the IT business. I began my career back in the day of big-iron mainframes and then on to become a database applications and systems programmer. The past three years I’ve been doing system administration of a large-scale system that automates huge retail warehouses all over the world. There are several reasons why the IRS’ claim that loss of Lois Learner’s emails is one of the biggest lies thrown into the face of the American people. Let me list them:

    I. All email comes through a mail server (in this case Microsoft Exchange). Before an email is sent or delivered a copy is made on the server that cannot be changed or deleted. A disk crash on an individual’s PC will therefore not cause the loss of the emails on the server. Furthermore, you can’t lose one person’s email on a server without losing everyone else’s.

    II. The Microsoft Exchange Mail server, if properly administered, has multiple redundant backups of the database. Microsoft implements something they call a Database Availability Group (DAG) to prevent the loss of email traffic. A DAG is implemented as a group of servers where each server backs up the other servers in the DAG. So if you have a DAG with 10 servers there would be the original database and nine copies.

    III. These days in large data centers applications do not store data directly on physical disks. Instead something called a Storage Array Network (SAN) is used. A SAN is one or more cabinets the size of a refrigerator filed with high-density, high-speed disks which are accessed through a sophisticated disk controller. The disk controller and software clump all disks in the SAN into one large pool of available disk space. The administrator can then crave out individual virtual drives of any size desired. Furthermore, RAID (redundant array of inexpensive disks) technology can be applied on the SAN. Basically RAID duplicates the data across disks in the SAN so that if any one disk goes bad, the data is not lost. The SAN then marks the bad disk and starts replicating the data on other disks in the SAN. The bad disk can then be hot-swapped with a new disk and everything goes on. This all happens in a way that is completely transparent to the mail server.

    IV. The mail server databases should be backed up to tape every day, or as is done in my shop is backed up to v-tape which is yet another redundant SAN application. This is simply best industry practice. This is done in case the database becomes corrupted for some reason where it can be restored.

    Congress should subpoena all the tech guys in the IRS’ shop that would have responsibility for anything to do with email servers, storage and hardware. Put them under oath and ask some pointed and testy questions about email servers, their storage and backup practices. The truth will spill out and some people in the IRS should be going to jail for obstruction of Justice/Congress.

    stmilam (770d4d)

  75. stmilam @75.

    I. They claim that e-mail was periodically deleted from the server – only 1,600 or so e-mails per person would be kept there (the actual probable measure would be kilobytes, or megabytes or gigabytes) It was raised to 6,000 e-mails around the time of the crash. And the IRS also claims that when they ran out of room, the user could choose what to delete, or store older e-mail on their own PC.

    That’s why, they say, when her hard disk crashed in mid-2011, or maybe when they went looking for her e-mail a year later, they only had e-mail from her going back to April, 2011.

    The question isn’t whether this is reasonable; the question is, if they did it. If they did things that way. There might be a whole new scandal here.

    II.

    II. The Microsoft Exchange Mail server, if properly administered, has multiple redundant backups of the database.

    Key words: if properly administed

    Besides, if there are daily backups, won’t that just give you an extra 9 days worth of e-mail backups, just take you back in time 9 days more?

    Possibly, they only went looking much later – since the amount of storage went up in July, 2011, everything that was still there in July was available a year later, and in July, 2011, her e-mail record on the central server only went back to April, 2011. Or it went back further in July, 2011, but eventually mail had started being erased, and by the time they looked, everything before April, 2011 was gone.

    III. Are we talking about the mail-server here? There is no claim that the mail-serveer crashed, or that any data was lost from it.

    IV. If they are backed up every day, and the backups overwritten, that only gives you a little bit more history.

    The key question is, could Lois Lerner selectively delete old e-mails from the server? And did the operating system really store the only copies of older e-mail on her hard disk?

    And since that hard disk that crashed should have been backed up, why was that not found? Did she do the restore herself, or have only one friend do it?

    Do we actually know for a fact, by the way, that her hard disk crashed?

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  76. I stumbled on a link to what looks like the actual letter the IRS sent to the House committee: (included here an enclosure to Darrell Issa

    http://waysandmeans.house.gov/uploadedfiles/6_13_14_irs_letter.pdf

    See pages 2 and 3, and then 6 and 7.

    It says the IRS system runs on Microsoft Outlook. About 170 terabytes are stored. There is also a daily backup for disaster recovery purposes. Prior to May, 2013 these backups were retained for 6 months and then re0used, but they are now stored.

    In May 2013 and June 2013, the IRS sent document retention notices to employees identified as having documents, including e-mails, potentially relevant to investigations. Lois lerner got sucvh a notice on May 16, 2013.

    The IRS limits the total volume of e-mail an individual user can keep on its server in their inbox.
    they say this is not uncommon in government or the private sector.

    It would cost $10 million to upgrade to store all the email ever sent or or received by all 90,000 IRS employees.

    The current limit per employee, since July 2011, is 500 megabytes or approximately 6,000 emails. Before it was 150 megabytes, or approximately 1,800 emails.

    E-mail is stored both on in the email inbox on the server and on the individual user’s hard drive. when the inbox gets close to being full the system sends an e-mail saying that ir will soon be unable to send additional messages.

    The user then has the option of deleting emails that do qualify as official records (and I suppose any outside mail that attempted to influence the URS would not qualify as an official record – to a computer anyway ) or moving them to an archive. Any that do qualify as an officvial record must be printed if deleted or separately archived. The archive is kept on the individuial employee’s computer. In other words, it is considered a purely personal record.

    On May 23, 2013, Lois Lerner was put on administrative leave and could no longer access her computer or blackberry and on September 23, 2013 she separated from the service

    It says they noticed in March 2014, when they were looking for all of her e-mails and not just those turned up by searches, that there wer very few e-mails before April 2011.

    They are unable to interview her to kearn more, but they “determined” that her computer had crashed in mid-2011. It says see Attachment E. At that time, Ms. Lerner requested the Information Technology Division to retrive the information from her hard drive.

    They have everything that was available, in May 2013. They have nothng from the back-up tapes because they were recycled. They have e-mail that went to or from lois Lerner asnd other IRS custodians.

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  77. There is aso some e-mail from Lois Lerner in July, and August, 2011, starting on July 19, in which she talks with others in the IRS about recovering material from her hard drive.

    It’s right at the end here:

    http://waysandmeans.house.gov/uploadedfiles/6_13_14_irs_letter.pdf

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  78. Wait, there’s actually an earlier e-mail from Douglas Akaisha sent to a number of people, but not Lois Lerner, dated June 13, 2011, with the subject: LOIS LERNER HARD DRIVE CRASH

    It says if you need to contact Lois call her at…

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  79. From the Washington Post article:

    Emails considered an “official record” of the IRS couldn’t be deleted and, in fact, needed to also have a hard copy filed. Those emails that constitute an official record are ones that are loosely defined under IRS policy as ones that were “[c]reated or received in the transaction of agency business,” “appropriate for preservation as evidence of the government’s function or activities,” or “valuable because of the information they contain”. The letter sent to the senators suggests that it was up to the user to determine what emails met those standards.

    Now, let me see, would an e-mail from a outside party suggesting that some tax exempt application be carefully checked – would that be something “created or received in the transaction of agency business?”

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  80. Sammy, you can choose to believe what the IRS is peddling, but you’ll never get anyone who has any experience with email servers to believe it. I have a degree in computer science, and I’m telling you that what they’re claiming is bs.

    The only thing that you wrote that makes any sense is:

    I mean, supposing, they are not really interested in helping the committee’s investigation.

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  81. 82. Hadoop (f7d5ba) — 6/16/2014 @ 2:24 pm

    Sammy, you can choose to believe what the IRS is peddling, but you’ll never get anyone who has any experience with email servers to believe it. I have a degree in computer science, and I’m telling you that what they’re claiming is bs.

    Well, they claimed, and enclosed some documents to prove, that:

    1. There was a limit of 150 megabytes (raised in July 2011 to 500 megabytes) in the amount of e-mail any IRS employee could maintain on their server.

    2. The employee was sent a message when the system neared capacity.

    3. They could then delete e-mails or archive them on their own hard drive.

    4. Anything that qualified as an official record was to be printed out if it was removed from the central server.

    5. Not every e-mail was considered an official record, and the individual employee could determine that something was not an official record. It was in fact more their job, to label something as an official record, if they felt it was one.

    6. There was a daily back-up, but until May, 2013, the backup tapes were re-used after 6 months.

    7. It would cost $10 million to upgrade and not have a limit. (although now they are not re-using any of the backup tapes, they actually do preserve them indefinitely, albeit maybe not in an eassy-to-access form.)

    8. Nobody responding the subpoenas realized that Lois Lerner had had a hard disk crash somewhere around June 2011, and that most of her e-mails prior to April, 2011 were missing because all of the requests before had been for text searches.

    9. They then recovered e-mails that she had sent or received from her IRS colleagues.

    10. They did not try to get any e-mails from anyone outside the IRS.

    11. Back in July and August, 2011, Lois Lerner had importuned technicians to recover data from her hard drive, saying there were some irreplaceable personal files there, but not even the CI forensic lab could recover them.

    12. Lois Lerner was warned to retain documents potentially relevant to investigations (that would mean not to delete records that might be of interest to an investigation) on May 16, 2013.

    13. Lois Lerner was put on administrative leave on May 23, 2013, and from that point on, could no longer access her computer or blackberry.

    14. Lois Lerner completely left the IRS on September 23, 2013.

    Now what part of that is bs?

    By the way, I found this:

    http://government-contracts.findthebest.com/l/5876554/Mid-America-Business-Systems-And-Internal-Revenue-Service-TIRMS11P00298

    Contractor Name Description Signed Date Obligation Amount

    Mid-America Business Systems & Il2457 G8217/2008-000517 Ci Forensic Lab Removal And Relocation Of Lektriever Files System. March 10, 2011 $6,500

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  82. Now what part of that is bs?

    All of it!

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  83. Sammy, it’s all bs.

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2014/06/cleta-mitchell-to-the-irs-answer-this.php

    …However, several statutes and regulations require that the records be accessible by the Committees, and, in turn, must be preserved and made available to TTV in the event of discovery in the pending litigation. Those statutes include the Federal Records Act, Internal Revenue Manual section 1.15.6.6 (which refers to the IRS’s preservation of electronic mail messages), IRS Document 12829 (General Records Schedule 23, Records Common to Most Offices, Item 5 Schedule of Daily Activities), 36 C.F.R. 1230 (reporting accidental destruction,) and 36 CFR 1222.12. Under those records retention regulations, and the Federal Records Act generally, the IRS is required to preserve emails or otherwise contemporaneously transmit records for preservation.

    Therefore, the failure for the IRS to preserve and provide these records to the Committees would evidence either violations of numerous records retention statutes and regulations or obstruction of Congress.

    Federal courts have held, in the context of trial, that the bad faith destruction of evidence relevant to proof of an issue gives rise to an inference that production of the evidence would have been unfavorable to the party responsible for its destruction. See Aramburu v. The Boeing Co., 112 F.3d 1398, 1407 (10th Cir. 1997). The fact that the IRS is statutorily required to preserve these records yet nevertheless publicly claimed that they have been “lost” appears to evidence bad faith. 18 U.S.C. § 1505 makes it a federal crime to…

    It’s a bs explanation why they just couldn’t follow the law.

    Next we can expect more bs about how it’s just too darned expensive to archive the email of 90k employees. As if that’t a huge task.

    But they can keep extensive records on 135 million individual taxpayers, lord knows how many corporations and other organizations.

    Bank of America can do it (must do it) with 288k employees. Hewlett Packard can do it with 324k employees. But the IRS can’t do it with 90k employees.

    Really, Sammy? You’re buying this?

    Steve57 (d38ceb)

  84. 5. Not every e-mail was considered an official record, and the individual employee could determine that something was not an official record. It was in fact more their job, to label something as an official record, if they felt it was one.

    In the private sector someone would go to prison for implementing such a policy and I don’t think it’s all that different in government, given the statutes and regulations Cleta Mitchell cites.

    Steve57 (d38ceb)

  85. Forget it, Steve. You’re initial explanation wasn’t good enough. ExchangeITAdmin further explained how email servers work. If this happened in the 1990s, I’d grudgingly concede the possibility that the email MIGHT not be recoverable. But, after taking three different networking classes, one devoted to security, I have to call bs. Even in the nineties, the non-profit I worked for used optical media to ensure that the technical information backups couldn’t be erased by conventional degaussing.

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  86. Apparently, you can fool Sammy ALL of the time.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  87. == Not every e-mail was considered an official record, and the individual employee could determine that something was not an official record. It was in fact more their job, to label something as an official record, if they felt it was one. ==

    That looks very much like the way it was. Or so they’re saying.

    Steve57 (d38ceb) — 6/16/2014 @ 4:23 pm

    In the private sector someone would go to prison for implementing such a policy and I don’t think it’s all that different in government, given the statutes and regulations Cleta Mitchell cites.

    This may be the case, yes; that is, this kind of a policy may be criminal.

    Although there are probably some explanations filed somewhere in a drawer, or in a lawyer’s office somewhere as to why this was legitimate, and maybe they could get by.

    Of course this policy was decided on – back in – 2009? 1998? Who knows when? You may have to go back 15 years to find the person responsible.

    And it’s hard to see anybody at DOJ looking into this before January 20, 2017, and EVEN THEN only if the pressure is kept up, and so the statue of limitations may have expired, unless it’s a RICO prosecution, and even then the statute of limitations may run out.

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  88. Quoting from Powerline: However, several statutes and regulations require that the records be accessible by the Committees, and, in turn, must be preserved and made available to TTV in the event of discovery in the pending litigation

    That only kicks in when there’s an investigation, that is, May 2013 in this case, and they have preserved all the records they had in May, 2013. they even stopped erasing the back-up tapes.

    Probably on advice of counsel.

    Steve57 (d38ceb) — 6/16/2014 @ 4:21 pm

    Bank of America can do it (must do it) with 288k employees. Hewlett Packard can do it with 324k employees. But the IRS can’t do it with 90k employees.

    Really, Sammy? You’re buying this?

    I’m buying that’s what they did. Not that they couldn’t do anything better.

    ….and that it was to cover up for many people, and many things, not just Lois Lerner and what she did with regard to applications for tax exempt status.

    This system wassn’t set up for the benefit of Lois Lerner.

    But for ALL IRS employees who broke the law.

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  89. Unpossible!

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  90. I’ll tell you what strikes me as possible bs: the claim that private organizations do the same things, too.

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  91. I’m saying this is really a much bigger scandal than Lois Lerner.

    They really did have this (crazy?) e-mail preservation system.

    They’re not making this up.

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  92. Maybe this is also true of some other federal goovernment agencies, like they say. (about some of it, anyway)

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  93. Hadoop @91: What’s unpossible?

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73)

  94. Hardly anyone accepts the IRS’ claim to have lost two years of Lois Lerner’s emails. Those most familiar with government record retention requirements, and the technology used, probably are the most skeptical.

    The supposedly lost emails cover January 2009 to April 2011, the period when Lerner is suspected of targeting conservative groups with heightened and invasive scrutiny. Those emails also pertain to communications Lerner may have had with agencies other than the Internal Revenue Service. That’s key, because many suspect that the Obama White House knew about, and may have coordinated, the targeting. Democrats in Congress including Rep. Elijah Cummings are also under suspicion because they publicly called for the IRS to investigate conservative and Tea Party groups before the IRS did so. Email evidence linking Cummings to Lerner and a plan to have the FBI investigate True the Vote, the Texas-based election integrity group that was targeted by the IRS along with several other executive branch law enforcement agencies, surfaced in April 2014.

    A former IRS IT specialist is casting serious doubt on the IRS’ claim to have lost the Lerner emails.

    This person worked at the IRS facility in New Carrollton, Maryland.

    He worked on the agency’s Prime Systems Integration Services Contract, or “Prime,” a contract inked between the IRS and Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC) in 1998 to modernize the IRS’ digital record-keeping system. CSC is the primary contractor, but other well-known companies including IBM, BearingPoint, Northrup Grumman, Unisys and Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC) are secondary players on the same contract.

    The former IRS IT contractor finds it difficult to believe that the IRS could really have lost two years’ worth of Lois Lerner’s emails.

    First, he points to the United States Code for government record retention. That code, 44 U.S.C. Chapter 33, governs what a government record is and requires that agencies must notify the Archivist of any records that are destroyed and the reasons for destroying them. The code was put into place after Iran-Contra to keep government workers and contractors from deleting records.

    Section § 3309 states that records “pertaining to claims and demands by or against the Government of the United States or to accounts in which the Government of the United States is concerned, either as debtor or creditor, may not be disposed of by the head of an agency under authorization granted under this chapter, until the claims, demands, and accounts have been settled and adjusted in the General Accounting Office, except upon the written approval of the Comptroller General of the United States.”

    “These environments were required by Federal regulations to be redundant and recoverable,” the former IRS IT worker says. “The recoverability requirements were put into place for exactly the reasons we see today.” Disposal of records outside the statutory standards requires permission in writing.

    He says that the IRS uses Microsoft Outlook/Exchange systems, which are backed up using Symantec NetBackup.

    He also says that “The IRS is the cash cow of the Federal Government. When they ask for funding for anything it was granted without discussion.”

    In the case of the prime contract and record retention, “The IRS IT projects were fully funded and never lacked for resources. To state ‘Backup tapes were reused after some short period’ is a complete joke. The IRS had thousands and thousands of tapes and ‘Virtual Tape Libraries’ (VTL or non-tape backups based on hard drive storage technologies). There was never a reason to reuse tapes.”

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  95. Hadoop @91: What’s unpossible?

    It’s a joke, Sammy! Unpossible! I’m not going to convince you, and you’re not going to convince me. If you read my comment @87, then you know that if we were talking about the 1990s, then I’d admit that there was a slight possibility that they couldn’t recover the emails. Even if you migrate to a new email system, or a different platform, you’d still make sure that you’d have residual support for any legacy systems with regard to archiving emails. These standards have existed for over 15 years.
    Steve and ExchangeITAdmin explained better than I did, why what is being claimed is bs. My degree is geared toward programming, not Network Administration. Although, as I stated previously, I’ve taken a network course specifically for security, which covered servers, including email servers. Networks are designed to address the very subject of archiving. I’m not going to try and explain the client/server architecture. You can believe what you want

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  96. 90. I’m buying that’s what they did. Not that they couldn’t do anything better…

    Sammy Finkelman (69aa73) — 6/16/2014 @ 4:44 pm

    No, Sammy, not that they couldn’t do better. They were required by law to do better. I’m not going to link to it again but the IRS’s own manual states what’s required to establish the integrity of the their electronic record keeping system in order to use those records in a judicial proceeding or other official action.

    And that the IRS is now making a bid for sympathy along the lines of, “We really did lose Lois Lerner’s emails here’s how and why won’t anybody believe us, waaah” by noting they decided to design an email preservation system that can not possibly stand up to scrutiny. I especially like the part where the IRS claims they leave it up to each and every of their 90k employees to decide what is and what isn’t an official record. And there’s no record of which emails they deleted and why. There is no trail. All they can tell a judge when told to produce official records is that, “Well, here’s what our agents decided to keep as official records. We don’t know why they kept these and not others.”

    ARe you getting a sense of how absurd this is and how this might possibly be a lie. Since lying to the press isn’t a crime. Lying to Congress is, though, but not as long as Eric Holder is the AG.

    Steve57 (d38ceb)

  97. Sammy @76. There are multiple federal laws requiring companies and federal agencies to keep an accurate record of *every* email. As to III, a SAN would be used as the storage of the mail server. A SAN would provide upwardly extensible storage via dynamic resizing of virtual disks and also provide data redundancy via RAID technology which has been around 20+ years. If you want to believe a federal agency that *COLLECTS MONEY* for the federal government can’t afford SAN technology to fulfil federal statutory requirements to keep a record of every email as is required of the smallest private company, and that emails had to be stored on personal PCs where they could be deleted, well, I believe you just fell off of the turnip truck!

    stmilam (909c7c)

  98. 100. stmilam (909c7c) — 6/16/2014 @ 6:01 pm

    Sammy @76. There are multiple federal laws requiring companies and federal agencies to keep an accurate record of *every* email.

    From the attachment entitled:

    Decsription of IRS Email Collection and Procedures

    Footnote 5, on the bottom of page 3:

    An official “record” is any documentary material made or received by an agency under federal law in connection with the transaction of public business and appropriate for preservation (44 U.S.C. § 3301). Not all of the emails on IRS servers or backup tapes qualify as official records; accordingly, the agency’s email system does notretain all mail indefinitely. Rather individual employees are responsible for ensuring that any email in their possession that qualifies as a “record” is retained in accordance with the requirements in the Internal Revenue Manual (IRM) and Document 12990 (Record Control Schedules).

    federal statutory requirements to keep a record of every email as is required of the smallest private company, and that emails had to be stored on personal PCs where they could be deleted, well, I believe you just fell off of the turnip truck!

    Maybe you’d have to have fallen off the turnip truck to believe that this position of the IRS is reasonable, but I think this is exactly what the position of the IRS on document retention is.

    And probably has been, since they first got e-mail.

    Sammy Finkelman (59be71)

  99. Steve57 (d38ceb) — 6/16/2014 @ 5:49 pm

    And that the IRS is now making a bid for sympathy along the lines of, “We really did lose Lois Lerner’s emails here’s how and why won’t anybody believe us, waaah” by noting they decided to design an email preservation system that can not possibly stand up to scrutiny.

    Maybe it can’t stand up to scrutiny, and maybe it doesn’t comply with the law, but that’s almost certainly exactly the e-mail preservation system they had.

    And my guess is, this system has been in place, more or less this way, since 1998.

    I especially like the part where the IRS claims they leave it up to each and every of their 90k employees to decide what is and what isn’t an official record.

    That’s exactly what they said.

    And there’s no record of which emails they deleted and why.

    Although they don’t say that, almost certainly true.

    And by now, probably, the records indicating who set up this system has been discarded.

    There is no trail.

    Yup.

    All they can tell a judge when told to produce official records is that, “Well, here’s what our agents decided to keep as official records. We don’t know why they kept these and not others.”

    ARe you getting a sense of how absurd this is

    Yes.

    and how this might possibly be a lie.

    No, I’m pretty sure this is the truth, and they did not make this up in 2014. This was all purpose measure for protecting all IRS employees from all corruption investigations.

    Since lying to the press isn’t a crime. Lying to Congress is, though, but not as long as Eric Holder is the AG.

    But I suspect this is not a lie. It just was a secret.

    Sammy Finkelman (59be71)

  100. 1.10.3.2.3 (07-08-2011)
    Emails as Possible Federal Records

    Please note that maintaining a copy of an email or its attachments within the IRS email MS Outlook application does not meet the requirements of maintaining an official record. Therefore, print and file email and its attachments if they are either permanent records or if they relate to a specific case.

    Hadoop (f7d5ba)

  101. my favorite part of the corrupt IRS whore’s letter to Camp was where he said it would cost TEN MILLION DOLLARS to be able to back-up email like how everyone else does

    this is the idiot organization what *wasted* THREE BILLION DOLLARS in the 90s trying and failing miserably to make their computer system work

    happyfeet (8ce051)


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