“The FBI’s director said Friday the agency is collecting data to present next year in hopes of sparking a national conversation about law enforcement’s increasing inability to access encrypted electronic devices,” Paul Elias reports for The Associated Press. “Speaking Friday at the American Bar Association annual conference in San Francisco, James Comey said… encryption technology makes it impossible in a growing number of criminal cases to search electronic devices. But he said it’s up to U.S. citizens, rather than the FBI or government officials, to decide whether to modify the technology to help law enforcement access the devices.”

“Comey’s concern with encryption emerged earlier this year when the FBI engaged in a high-profile legal fight with Apple over accessing data from a locked iPhone used by one of the two shooters in the San Bernardino, California, terrorist attack,” Elias reports.

U.S. FBI Director James Comey

U.S. FBI Director James Comey

“Silicon Valley companies say encryption safeguards customers’ privacy rights and offers protections from hackers, corporate spies and other breaches. ‘The San Bernardino litigation was necessary, but in my view, it was also counterproductive,’ Comey said during his 20-minute speech. ‘It was necessary because we had to get into that phone. It was counterproductive because it made it very hard to have a complex conversation.'”

“Comey said he hopes a calmer conversation about encryption and its effects on public safety can be started in 2017 after the presidential elections pitting Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton,” Elias reports. “Comey chided Clinton on July 5 for being ‘extremely careless’ in using private email servers for government communications while serving as secretary of state, but he recommended no criminal charges. On Friday, in response to a question about the decision, Comey said, ‘I don’t want to talk about the case itself anymore…'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Comey, how many products do you think U.S. companies will sell abroad that come with keys for the FBI (that will be duplicated and spread everywhere within days, if it even takes that long), genius?

Encryption is either on or off. There is no such thing a a back door that’s only for the so-called “good guys.”

As we wrote last October:

Too many people do not realize how lucky we are that Tim Cook is CEO of Apple Inc. No matter what else Cook does, as long as he holds his ground on this issue [strong encryption], he’s one of the greatest CEOs in history. We need and are lucky to have a man with a strong backbone to stand up to this constant pressure from misguided government spies who’re hell bent on running roughshod over the U.S. Constitution and U.S. citizens’ rights.

Furthermore, the friends and family members of all terrorism victims should be incensed that the U.S. federal government tried to abuse such tragic deaths in a despicable ploy to sway a confused portion of the public to support the trampling of their own rights (as the gov’t tried after San Bernadino).

Just because they’re “in the government” doesn’t make them smart. Oftentimes, the inverse is true. For example, the feds were all over the Orlando Islamic terrorist and they still fecklessly blew it.

The best minds are not in government. If any were, business would steal them away. — Ronald Reagan

Those who wrongheadedly agree with shortsighted and/or disingenuous government hacks need to realize that they are working to deliver exactly what the terrorists seek to achieve with their murderous rampages: Loss of freedom.

Don’t be blind. Don’t be stupid. Don’t be weak.

Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death! – Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775

Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. – Benjamin Franklin

Visit the Apple-backed reformgovernmentsurveillance.com today.

Feckless FBI unable to unlock iPhone, even with a ‘fingerprint unlock warrant’ – May 12, 2016
FBI’s Comey says agency paid more than $1 million to access San Bernadino iPhone – April 21, 2016
Nothing significant found on San Bernardino’s terrorist’s iPhone – April 14, 2016
FBI director confirms hack only works on older iPhones that lack Apple’s Secure Enclave – April 7, 2016
Apple responds to FBI: ‘This case should have never been brought’ – March 29, 2016