FBI Director: Silicon Valley’s encryption is a “business model problem”

FBI Director James Comey. (credit: C-SPAN)

Leaders in both major political parties have increasingly been calling on tech companies to give law enforcement encryption backdoors in the wake of recent terror attacks in Paris and California.

Today, FBI director James Comey has suggested that Silicon Valley isn't faced with a serious technical problem, but rather a "business model problem," according to a report on his comments in The Intercept, based on C-SPAN video of the hearing.

On the face of it, Comey's statement would seem to back away from earlier suggestions that tech companies can and should find a way to allow access to data when law enforcement wanted it, but provide otherwise secure services. Critics have pointed out that any encryption backdoors that can be used by the "good guys" also lead to widespread insecurity, since they can also be exploited by not-so-good guys.

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