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Former CIA Head: The FBI is wrong about Apple

Nicole Sinclair
·Markets Correspondent

The former head of the NSA and CIA, General Michael Hayden, has a counter-intuitive view when it comes to the stand-off between Apple (AAPL) and the FBI: He sides with Apple.

The developing case of the San Bernardino iPhone underlies the heightened focus of security as an important issue facing Americans as we approach the 2016 election. Hayden said his decision to side with Apple is consistent with his time in government.

“You can parse this problem in a lot of ways. Constitutionally: does the government have a right to order it? I’m not a constitutional lawyer. I’ll let those guys settle that. Privacy? He’s dead. Never his phone. I don’t think it’s a privacy issue. I’m looking at it as a security issue,” he said. “I think on balance, America ends up in a less secure place if we somehow weaken what now appears to be very unbreakable encryption in the iPhone.”

Hayden added that the technology revolution that we’ve undergone has that has allowed law enforcement more access than ever before is in many ways an anomaly.

“What we’ve seen for the last 10 or 15 years might actually be the anomaly. The anomaly in which you and I and everyone else rushed to the digital domain and put a whole bunch of stuff up there before we thought, ‘is it safe or not?’ Including bad people. And law enforcement and intelligence has been able to exploit that. But if you step back and look at the timeline over history, that may be the exception. Not now.”