COMMONS

FCO Secure communications and handling of classified information - evidence session

10 July 2019

Sir Simon McDonald, KCMG, KCVO, Permanent Under Secretary and Head of the Diplomatic Service, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, will be the first witness for the Foreign Affairs Committee’s urgent inquiry into the FCO's secure communications and handling of classified information.

Witness

At 1.00pm, Committee Room 16, Palace of Westminster

  • Sir Simon McDonald, KCMG, KCVO, Permanent Under Secretary and Head of the Diplomatic Service, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Purpose of the session

The inquiry was launched yesterday, following publication of confidential communications from the UK Ambassador to the US.

The inquiry will consider:

  • The necessity of secure communications and information handling for the good functioning of the FCO and the impact of leaks on that functioning
  • The steps taken by the FCO to ensure that its information and communications are treated securely
  • Whether the steps taken by the FCO and other Government departments in response to apparent leaks are adequate;
  • Whether the classification regime used by the FCO is appropriate;
  • Whether the sanctions in place to deter such leaks are effective and fit for purpose.

Written evidence is welcome and should be submitted via the Committee’s inquiry page.

Further information

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