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+Vid US President Barack Obama has come out forcefully in favour of strong encryption despite the opposition of his intelligence establishment. Encryption has been a hot topic over recent weeks with Western law enforcement and intelligence agencies complaining about encryption-by-default in modern communication tools such as smartphones. Prime Minister David Cameron recently began pushing the idea of banning crypto products that UK spies are unable to access, an idea he first floated in a recent speech before lobbying US President Barack Obama on the issue, seemingly unsuccessfully. In an interview with Re/code, Obama said that he’s a ”strong believer in strong encryption," adding, "I lean probably further on side of strong encryption than some in law enforcement”. “Ultimately everybody, and certainly this is true for me and my family, we all want to know that if we’re using a smartphone for transactions, sending messages, having private conversations, that we don’t have a bunch of people compromising that process,” Obama explained. “There’s no scenario in which we don’t want really strong encryption.” The president went on to claim that public concern about stymieing terrorism investigations is behind legislators' concerns about encryption. “Where there is a situation in which we’re trying to get a specific case of a possible national security threat — is there a way of accessing it? If it turns out it’s not, then we’re really gonna have to have a public debate,” Obama said. “And, you know, I think some in Silicon Valley would make the argument that the harms done by having any kind of compromised encryption are far greater.” Obama also conceded that the ongoing Snowden disclosures have affected relations between Silicon Valley and the US government. “The Snowden disclosures were really harmful in terms of the trust between the government and many of these companies, in part because it had an impact on their bottom lines. A transcript of the full interview, which also covered cyber warfare and a variety of other hi-tech topics, can be found here. A video clip of a segment of the interview where Obama talks about encryption can be found at the top of this story. Despite the furore over the recent megahack on Sony, which the US government blames on North Korea, Obama dismissed the NORKs as no great shakes when it came to offensive cyber warfare, while stating that “China and Russia are very good [and] Iran is good.” Source