Donald Trump — who accused Hillary Clinton of being a security risk over her e-mails — is insisting on making cellphone calls which can be monitored by Russian and Chinese intelligence.

US intelligence services have issued reports that Trump’s calls to old friends can be used to get insight into how to manipulate him and affect the Administration’s foreign policy, “current and former American officials” said.

Staff have repeatedly warned Trump that his cellphone calls are not secure and that Russian spies are routinely eavesdropping. But Trump, despite the pressure to use his secure White House landline, is refusing to give up his iPhones.

The sources said Trump has two official iPhones that have been altered by the National Security Agency to limit their capabilities and thus vulnerabilities. But Trump is insisting on retaining a third personal phone that is no different from other iPhones, because he can store his contacts in it.

Aides said Trump uses his cellphones when he does not want a call going through the White House switchboard, which can be logged for senior aides to see. Those with whom he speaks most often on one of his cellphones includes hosts at Fox who promote his views.

Officials said US services learnt of the Chinese and Russian monitoring through human intelligence inside foreign governments and interception of communications between foreign officials. They said the Chinese are using the information — on Trump’s thoughts, on what arguments influence him, and to whom he prefers to listen — to limit Trump’s trade war with its tariffs on Beijing.

The officials said Trump’s friends on China’s list, hoping to use them to sway Trump, include Stephen Schwarzman, the chief executive of the Blackstone Group who has endowed a master’s program at Tsinghua University in Beijing, and Steve Wynn, the former Las Vegas casino magnate who used to own property in Macau.

Trump tried to deny the report, while admitting that he makes cellphone calls:

President Barack Obama used an iPhone in his second term, but it could not make calls and could receive e-mail only from a special address given to a select group of staff members and close friends. It had no camera or microphone, and it could not be used to download applications.

The White House tried to rewrite The New York Times story in a statement from Deputy Press Secretary Hogan Gidley on Thursday night:

[It] presented inaccurate information about the president’s cellphone and its usage….

The President does not have three cellular phones. He has one official government iPhone. This phone security follows industry best practices and is closely managed under government supervision in conjunction with recommendations from industry partners. The phone is rotated on a regular basis and is constantly monitored for any security vulnerabilities and attacks, in accordance with recommendations from the intelligence community.

Trump got some help from Chinese and Russian denials of any spying on his calls.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said “some people in the United States” were competing for “the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay” with “fake news”.

She took the opportunity to promote a Chinese competitor of Apple: “If they are very worried about iPhones being tapped, they can use Huawei.”

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, “[We] are treating such material with humor.”