Lawmaker seeks information on encryption in terrorist attack


The head of the Senate Homeland Security Committee is asking the Justice Department to disclose whether encryption was used in the Dec. 2 terrorist attack in San Bernardino, Calif.

"Please provide any evidence of encrypted communication retrieved from the electronic devices of [Syed] Farook and [Tashfeen] Malik that may have masked specific plans and logistics," requests the letter from Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., addressed to Attorney General Loretta Lynch on Monday.

Following the attack, some members of Congress have expressed support for ending strong encryption. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said last week that she intends to propose legislation prohibiting the sort of end-to-end encryption that law enforcement officials are unable to access. "I think this world is really changing in terms of people wanting the protection and wanting law enforcement, if there is conspiracy going on over the Internet, that that encryption ought to be able to be pierced," she said during a Wednesday committee hearing.

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