Did You Know?

We Need Examples of Cases Hindered By “Going Dark”


Encryption of smartphones and other digital media has thwarted law enforcement’s ability to keep communities safe. Even with a lawfully issued search warrant, the information requested cannot be accessed from encrypted phones. This loss of evidence is referred to as “Going Dark.”

To demonstrate the real dangers of Going Dark, we need to hear about your affected cases. Helpful examples include cases where evidence in a smart phone is unattainable due to encryption, but could have been critical in solving cases such as a homicide, a robbery, a lost child, or a terrorist attack.

The Statistics Collection Tool gathers these examples in one place. It was developed by the National Domestic Communications Assistance Center (NDCAC), the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), and the New York County District Attorney’s Office, with the support of many other enforcement groups.

If your agency enters information in the Statistics Collection Tool, you will be able to see all the other collected information.

Entering Examples into the Statistics Collection Tool

Step 1: Designate a staff member from your agency to serve as a point of contact and to input case information. That designee should contact the NDCAC Technical Resource Group at (855) 306-3222, or via email at AskNDCAC@ic.fbi.gov.

Step 2: Begin inputting case information either by using NDCAC’s web portal or by completing a spreadsheet to submit cases in bulk, available upon request.

Any questions contact: Kenn Kern, Chief of Staff of the New York County District Attorney’s Office Investigation Division, at kernk@dany.nyc.gov.

For more information about Going Dark:

Report of the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office on Smartphone Encryption and Public Safety
New York County District Attorney’s Office (November 2016) Read

Quantifying Law Enforcement’s “Going Dark” Problem: Statistics Collection Tool
FBI’s National Domestic Communications Assistance Center, PowerPoint, Marybeth Paglino (January 2017) Read