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[U.S]–James Comey, director of the Federal Bureau of Statistics has warned Americans  not to have unrealistic expectations of “absolute privacy,”.

Comey, while speaking at a Boston College conference on cyber security, said, “There is no such thing as absolute privacy in America; there is no place outside of judicial reach.”

He made the remark as he discussed the rise  of data encryption since disclosures by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden exposed espionage-related dealings by the United States government.

“Even our communications with our spouses, with our clergy members, with our attorneys are not absolutely private in America,” Comey further said.

“In appropriate circumstances, a judge can compel any one of us to testify in court about those very private communications.”

However, he stressed that privacy should not be taken for granted in the name of security.

He said that Americans “have a reasonable expectation of privacy in our homes, in our cars, in our devices.

“It is a vital part of being an American. The government cannot invade our privacy without good reason, reviewable in court,” Comey continued.

In the last four months of 2016, the FBI lawfully gained access to 2,800 devices recovered in criminal, terrorism and counterintelligence investigations and the FBI was unable to open 43% of those devices, Comey said.

“Americans’ desire for privacy and security should never be viewed as incompatible,” he said.

“We all value privacy. We all value security. We should never have to sacrifice one for the other,” Comey said.

“Our founders struck a bargain that is at the center of this amazing country of ours and has been for over two centuries.”

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