‘No such thing as absolute privacy in America’ – FBI Director Comey

Thursday, March 9, 2017
By Paul Martin

9 Mar, 2017

FBI Director James Comey has warned that absolute privacy does not exist in the US, noting that a judge can compel anyone to testify about their communications – and even their memories.

“There is no such thing as absolute privacy in America,” Comey told a cybersecurity conference in Boston on Wednesday, while speaking about the rise of encryption since whistleblower Edward Snowden revealed National Security Agency (NSA) spy practices in 2013.

“There is no place in America outside of judicial reach,” he added.

“Even our communications with our spouses, with our clergy members, with our attorneys are not absolutely private in America,” Comey said. “In appropriate circumstances, a judge can compel anyone of us to testify in court about those very private communications.”

He went on to state that although Americans have a “reasonable expectation” of privacy in their homes, cars, and on their devices, the government can still “invade our private spaces.”

“Even our memories aren’t private. Any of us can be compelled to say what we saw…,” Comey said.

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