NSA Head: Neither Side ‘Fundamentally Wrong’ in Privacy Debate

After the FBI and Britain's top spy agency criticized Silicon Valley for encrypting and protecting user data, Michael Rogers, director of the NSA, came to Palo Alto to make peace. "I am not one who jumps up and down and says either side is fundamentally wrong," Rogers told a crowd of students and professors at Stanford University on Monday. "I understand what drives each side to their viewpoint on this." He said that he understood FBI Director James Comey's desire for "some mechanism on the technical side" where, "using a legal framework," encrypted data could be accessed by the government.

He also claimed that the NSA did not know about or exploit the Heartbleed bug before news of it broke in April. When it comes to cybersecurity threats, Rogers said it was "unrealistic to expect the private sector to withstand the actions of nation-states," but equally unrealistic to "expect the government to deal with this all by itself." Rogers also tried to woo away computer science students from lucrative Silicon Valley jobs. "We are going to give you the opportunity to do some neat things that you can't legally do anywhere else," he said.

Is the U.S. Intelligence Community Out of Control? 2:14



— Keith Wagstaff