Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Partisan or Protection? Congress Banned from Accessing Drudge Report

This morning at The Drudge Report was this flash story:

Just as the healthcare drama in the capitol reaches a grand finale, congressional officials are warning employees to avoid the DRUDGE REPORT!

The Senate's Committee on Environment and Public Works issued an urgent email late Monday claiming the DRUDGE REPORT is 'responsible for the many viruses popping up throughout the Senate.'

The committee ordered hill staff: 'Try to avoid' the DRUDGE REPORT 'for now'.

On Monday DRUDGE served over 29 million pages with NOT ONE email complaint received about 'pop ups', or the site serving 'viruses'.

The site was seen 149,967 times since March 1st from users at senate.gov and 244,347 times at house.gov. [10,825 visits from the White House, eop.gov]

The Systems Administrator may want to continue taking her antibiotic until the prescription runs out.


FoxNews.com is also carrying the story. From that article:

In the very body sworn to protect and defend the Constitution, an e-mail is circulating warning U.S. Senate staffers not to view one of the most popular news sites on the Web, claiming it could spread computer viruses.

The Senate Sergeant-at-Arms, the chamber's official gatekeeper, said the Drudge Report, a news aggregator, and whitepages.com, a telephone directory site, "are responsible for the many viruses popping up throughout the Senate," according to an e-mail from the Environment and Public Works Committee obtained by FoxNews.com.

Another e-mail from a separate office warned that staffers who had visited the Drudge Report or White Pages had experienced viruses on their PCs.

"Please avoid using these sites until the Senate resolves this issue," the e-mail read. "The Senate has been swamped the last couples (sic) days with this issue."

Last May, the U.S. attorney’s office in Massachusetts directed employees not to log onto the Drudge Report with government-issued computers due to potential viruses on the site. From Politico:

In an e-mail message sent May 4, Paul Harvey, an information-technology official for the Boston office, wrote that security specialists with the U.S. attorney’s office at the Justice Department asked them “to reformat/reimage two computers because the user visited the drudgereport.com site.”

“Please avoid the Drudgereport website from the [United States attorney’s office] computers,” Harvey wrote.

Harvey said that if employees had a “work-related reason to visit the site,” access could be provided off the government network.

Asked why the conservative-leaning news aggregator and President Barack Obama critic was flagged by Internet security officials, Tracy Schmaler, a Justice Department spokeswoman, said it was because “a malicious code was found contained in a Web ad on Drudge.”

Schmaler also said the request to stay off Drudge wasn’t politically motivated and said it was sent only to the office in Massachusetts. She also said other popular sites were later found to have potential viruses, including ESPN.com.

I have used Drudge Report as my homepage on my personal computer for a number of years, and I have never had a virus that I could attribute to that website or any advertisements found on Drudge.

More discussion can be found at Left Coast Rebel and Memeorandum, and Big Government has a fun piece that contrasts NBC White House correspondent Chuck Todd with Matt Drudge.


Right Ideas said...

Great blog. This is another distraction from the real issues they can't get passed. They hope they can distract enough people from the truth, or at least an opposite viewpoint, to get what they want. And thanks for the follow and the comments.

Soloman said...

Right Ideas -

Thanks for linking me.. I added you to my blogroll, hope you see some traffic coming your way!