When former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton turned over 30,000 emails she’d sent using a private server to the State Department, she gave the government a hard copy.
Instead of, uh—what’s that thing, where you transfer a message electronically? And then you don’t have to print it out? And that’s instantly searchable by the recipient computer?
Oh right, emailing! Instead of emailing the emails to the State Department or transferring them via some other convenient, digital method, she printed all 30,000.
Once the papers arrived at State, they had to be re-digitized, a process which took 12 employees more than 2,400 hours at taxpayer expense.
As Newsbusters points out, giving the State Department print copies allowed Clinton to conceal quite a lot of important information:
Investigators will not get the background “electronic fingerprint,” which is not displayed to either the writer or the recipient. This can include (the) originating IP address (as opposed to the email address itself), the server it was sent from, timing information that cannot be easily manipulated (as opposed to the header, which is easy to type or alter in paper format), and whether or not there was an attachment at some point in a multi-level conversation. By handing them over in print, she destroys the data integrity.