Thou Shalt Not Leak: Jamming Devices Installed To Block Cardinal - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Thou Shalt Not Leak: Jamming Devices Installed To Block Cardinals' Cellphones

ROME - Jamming devices to halt communication were installed at the Vatican on Monday, as part of a security lockdown ahead of the papal conclave.

The behind-the-scenes ballot process is supposed to remain a secret, but modern technology left Roman Catholic Church officials taking no chances.

Staff working alongside the cardinals voting inside the Sistine Chapel must swear an oath of secrecy.

"I expect they'll be on a total lockdown," NBC News' Vatican analyst George Weigel said. "Security is tight. It's got to be."

Jamming devices will be used at the Sistine Chapel inside the Vatican and the nearby guest residences at Santa Marta where cardinals will sleep during the conclave, officials told reporters on Friday.

The move will ensure cardinals cannot communicate with the outside world or use social media. It will also prevent hidden microphones from picking up the discussions.

Any cardinals or Vatican workers –- such as those serving food in Santa Marta – breaching the code face excommunication from the church.

"Even who said, ‘pass the salt' is a secret," wrote Sister Mary Ann Walsh, media relations director for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in a blog post. "In this electronic age, I worry some cardinals may go into iPad and Twitter withdrawal."

To prevent any contact with the outside world, cardinals will also be taken the 750 yards from Santa Marta to the Sistine Chapel by bus.

"The Vatican highly prizes the traditional Conclave secrecy -- even more so after the leaks scandal that have plagued it in the past months," said Alessandro Speciale, Vatican correspondent for Religion News Service. "Most of the jamming measures were already in use in 2005, but of course, back then there were no smartphones and iPads. While cardinals will probably take their commitment to secrecy seriously, some of them are avid [Tweeters] and bloggers, and they might risk going into internet withdrawal if the conclave drags on too long."

Weigel added: "It would be difficult for anyone to use a cellphone, even out of sight. With 115 cardinals in the Sistine Chapel, space is tight and it would be obvious if anyone was checking their phone."

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Man run over by lawn mower while trying to kill son with chainsaw

    Man run over by lawn mower while trying to kill son with chainsaw

    Monday, October 15 2018 7:38 PM EDT2018-10-15 23:38:29 GMT

    BRISTOL, Tenn. (AP) - A man who police say was run over with a lawn mower while trying to kill his son with a chain saw has had to have his leg amputated. The Bristol Herald Courier reports that a warrant for 76-year-old Douglas Ferguson couldn’t be served until Tuesday because of the severity of his injuries.

    >>

    BRISTOL, Tenn. (AP) - A man who police say was run over with a lawn mower while trying to kill his son with a chain saw has had to have his leg amputated. The Bristol Herald Courier reports that a warrant for 76-year-old Douglas Ferguson couldn’t be served until Tuesday because of the severity of his injuries.

    >>
  • Spokane bomb squad removes explosive device from Smelterville home

    Spokane bomb squad removes explosive device from Smelterville home

    Tuesday, October 16 2018 1:18 AM EDT2018-10-16 05:18:08 GMT

    SMELTERVILLE, Idaho - The Spokane bomb squad was called in to assist with an explosive device found in the Smelterville area on Monday. Shoshone County Sheriff's Office Deputies and the District 2 Fire Department responded to a residence in Smelterville for a possible explosive device. Following some questioning and investigation, the Spokane bomb squad was dispatched.

    >>

    SMELTERVILLE, Idaho - The Spokane bomb squad was called in to assist with an explosive device found in the Smelterville area on Monday. Shoshone County Sheriff's Office Deputies and the District 2 Fire Department responded to a residence in Smelterville for a possible explosive device. Following some questioning and investigation, the Spokane bomb squad was dispatched.

    >>
  • Spokane Detectives collaborate with victims to track down, arrest internet scammer

    Spokane Detectives collaborate with victims to track down, arrest internet scammer

    Monday, October 15 2018 6:55 PM EDT2018-10-15 22:55:22 GMT

    SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash. - The Spokane County Sheriff's Office, with help of victims, successfully arrested a 40-year-old man behind an internet scam involving the sale of classic cars. On Oct. 4, Investigative Task Force Detectives arrested Samuel Richardson for second-degree theft with the assistance of the U.S. Postal Service & Newport Police. .

    >>

    SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash. - The Spokane County Sheriff's Office, with help of victims, successfully arrested a 40-year-old man behind an internet scam involving the sale of classic cars. On Oct. 4, Investigative Task Force Detectives arrested Samuel Richardson for second-degree theft with the assistance of the U.S. Postal Service & Newport Police. .

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • 39-year-old Spokane Valley man arrested for sexually assaulting 12-year-old girl

    39-year-old Spokane Valley man arrested for sexually assaulting 12-year-old girl

    Tuesday, October 16 2018 2:20 PM EDT2018-10-16 18:20:11 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - The Spokane County Sheriff's Office says they have arrested a 39-year-old man for sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl.  Last month, detectives received information from the Post Falls Police Department naming Jeffrey A. Christenot as a suspect in the sexual assault of a 12-year-old girl in 2015-2016. The information stated Christenot confessed to the crimes in a video that had been posted to Facebook. 

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - The Spokane County Sheriff's Office says they have arrested a 39-year-old man for sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl.  Last month, detectives received information from the Post Falls Police Department naming Jeffrey A. Christenot as a suspect in the sexual assault of a 12-year-old girl in 2015-2016. The information stated Christenot confessed to the crimes in a video that had been posted to Facebook. 

    >>
  • Mississippi officials investigate toddler found dead in oven

    Mississippi officials investigate toddler found dead in oven

    Tuesday, October 16 2018 2:17 PM EDT2018-10-16 18:17:40 GMT

    A grandmother is being questioned after her dead granddaughter was found inside a heated oven in a Mississippi town.    Bolivar County Sheriff Kelvin Williams tells local news outlets the 20-month-old girl had also been stabbed when she was found dead Monday night in Shaw.    The grandmother isn't currently charged but Williams describes her as being in custody. Officials haven't named her or the toddler.    

    >>

    A grandmother is being questioned after her dead granddaughter was found inside a heated oven in a Mississippi town.    Bolivar County Sheriff Kelvin Williams tells local news outlets the 20-month-old girl had also been stabbed when she was found dead Monday night in Shaw.    The grandmother isn't currently charged but Williams describes her as being in custody. Officials haven't named her or the toddler.    

    >>
  • Pullman Police issue 'Attempt to Locate' for 'WSU Popcorn Guy'

    Pullman Police issue 'Attempt to Locate' for 'WSU Popcorn Guy'

    Tuesday, October 16 2018 1:48 PM EDT2018-10-16 17:48:10 GMT

    PULLMAN, Wash. - It's a moment that proudly lives in WSU football history.  September 28, 2013.  WSU is losing to Stanford. The score isn't important, but let's just say it was a lot. Ok, fine. It was 41-3 early in the 4th quarter.

    >>

    PULLMAN, Wash. - It's a moment that proudly lives in WSU football history.  September 28, 2013.  WSU is losing to Stanford. The score isn't important, but let's just say it was a lot. Ok, fine. It was 41-3 early in the 4th quarter. The cameras of ESPN turned their attention to one lonely Coug fan in the 300 level.  There was one man. His feet were reclined, his arms were sprawled.

    >>