Donald Trump has reportedly surrendered his personal smartphone

Donald Trump hands over his smartphone
(Image credit: Chris Kleponis-Pool/Getty Images)

President-elect Donald Trump doesn't only use his Android smartphone to tweet — he also makes and takes calls at all hours, even from unknown or "No Caller ID" numbers, according to reporters and associates. It has been an indispensable tool for business and campaigning, but it would be a national security nightmare for a president. So, on Thursday, The Associated Press reports, Trump "told a friend that he had given up his phone, as security agencies had urged him to do," and as President Obama had, reluctantly, eight years ago. "Trump doesn't email, but he uses his phone to tweet," AP adds, "something he's made clear he plans to continue in office."

Trump "traded in his Android phone for a secure, encrypted device approved by the Secret Service with a new number that few people possess," The New York Times reports, citing "people close to the transition." Trump's aides told the newspaper that even though the official rationale was security, they are relieved at his restricted phone access — or at least greater reliance on the White House switchboard. Obama was originally given a special BlackBerry that was largely disabled for security purposes. He recently switched to an iPhone that let him email a limited group of people and surf the web, AP says, though he did not use it to make calls and always coordinated with staff before sending out a tweet.

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Peter Weber, The Week US

Peter has worked as a news and culture writer and editor at The Week since the site's launch in 2008. He covers politics, world affairs, religion and cultural currents. His journalism career began as a copy editor at a financial newswire and has included editorial positions at The New York Times Magazine, Facts on File, and Oregon State University.