Nearly every day, I warn you about the latest hackers and scammers out there trying to break into your accounts and steal your money. To help shore up your defenses against these bad guys, I recommend using every resource available to you including tough passwords and even encryption when you must use public Wi-Fi.
That's why I was so surprised when the Director of the FBI, James Comey, made a case to Congress last week that you should have fewer tools to keep your privacy private. According to his testimony, the FBI doesn't just want complete access to your phone; the organization wants to get rid of "unbreakable" encryption entirely. Encryption is the only way that we can keep our data private, from either the government (which may or not have cause to need to know what's in your phone), but also from hackers who are out to drain your accounts dry.
So why does the FBI want access to your phone? Well, you might remember Apple CEO Tim Cook's promise that all of Apple's gadgets would come encrypted by default.
The FBI originally asked for a backdoor to your phone, but Apple doesn't have a digital "key" to your gadget and it isn't going to give one to the feds unless someone makes the company do so.
That's not to say that the FBI can't already get any information from an encrypted cellphone.