Leo Varadkar banning mobile phones in Cabinet meetings due to ‘security risk’

New Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is banning ministers from bringing mobile phones into Cabinet meetings. Security risks from electronic spying are being cited for the new regulations.

ut the unprecedented move also follows controversies over leaking from Government. Mr Varadkar was investigated for providing a confidential document to a friend. And Higher Education Minister Simon Harris was accused on the Dáil record of leaking confidential information direct from the Cabinet table. 

Leaking from Cabinet is in breach of the Constitution. Ministers have now been instructed to leave their phones, tablets and devices in pigeon holes outside the room.

A Government source said it was the norm across European governments to not bring electronic devices into the room due to the risk of bugging by foreign powers. Mobile electronic devices can be hacked into to listen to confidential discussions.