US Lacks Tools to Access Encrypted Messages, Terror Plots - FBI Director

© Flickr / Yuri SamoilovThe FBI's reasoning comes across a bit contradictory.
The FBI's reasoning comes across a bit contradictory. - Sputnik International
US law enforcement does not have the ability or authority to access encrypted communications in order to prevent terrorist attacks, FBI Director James Comey told the Senate Committee on Intelligence.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The FBI Director explained that even with a court order, the Bureau is unable to break strong encryption used by terrorist organizations.

“The tools you have given us are not working the way you expect them to work in the highest stakes matters,” Comey said on Wednesday addressing the issue of encryption.

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Hardware and software companies have developed encryption with security keys only the user can access, he said, thereby preventing law enforcement from accessing information even from companies.

Earlier on Wednesday, a US Justice Department official suggested hardware and software companies be required to develop encryption security keys that could be handed over to the US government.

That idea, however, faces resistance from companies, as well as some lawmakers following revelations of US mass surveillance practices and concerns for privacy.

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