New FBI head in San Francisco was key figure in iPhone hack

Features Associated Press

  • In this photo taken Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2016, FBI Special Agent Jack Bennett answers a question while posing in one of the bureau's modernized offices in San Francisco. The FBI’s new leader in San Francisco is a former drug investigator who developed expertise in technology that put him at the center of the government’s effort to unlock an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino shooters. Bennett now has oversight responsibilities for Silicon Valley. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

    In this photo taken Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2016, FBI Special Agent Jack Bennett answers a question while posing in one of the bureau's modernized offices in San Francisco. The FBI’s new leader in San Francisco is a former drug investigator who developed ... expertise in technology that put him at the center of the government’s effort to unlock an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino shooters. Bennett now has oversight responsibilities for Silicon Valley. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg) (The Associated Press)

  • In this photo taken Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2016, FBI Special Agent Jack Bennett poses in his office in San Francisco. The FBI’s new leader in San Francisco is a former drug investigator who developed expertise in technology that put him at the center of the government’s effort to unlock an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino shooters. Bennett now has oversight responsibilities for Silicon Valley. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

    In this photo taken Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2016, FBI Special Agent Jack Bennett poses in his office in San Francisco. The FBI’s new leader in San Francisco is a former drug investigator who developed expertise in technology that put him at the center of ... the government’s effort to unlock an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino shooters. Bennett now has oversight responsibilities for Silicon Valley. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg) (The Associated Press)

  • In this photo taken Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2106, FBI Special Agent Jack Bennett listens to a question while posing outside his office in San Francisco. The FBI’s new leader in San Francisco is a former drug investigator who developed expertise in technology that put him at the center of the government’s effort to unlock an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino shooters. Bennett now has oversight responsibilities for Silicon Valley. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

    In this photo taken Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2106, FBI Special Agent Jack Bennett listens to a question while posing outside his office in San Francisco. The FBI’s new leader in San Francisco is a former drug investigator who developed expertise in ... technology that put him at the center of the government’s effort to unlock an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino shooters. Bennett now has oversight responsibilities for Silicon Valley. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg) (The Associated Press)

The FBI's new leader in San Francisco is a former drug investigator who developed expertise in technology that put him at the center of the government's effort to unlock an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino shooters.

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Special Agent Jack Bennett previously headed the bureau's digital forensics labs, which were tasked with accessing the San Bernardino gunman's phone. Bennett was at an FBI lab in Quantico, Virginia, in March when an outside company showed the bureau how it could hack the device.

The tool ended the FBI's high-profile fight with Apple Inc. over access to the cellphone. That battle exposed a rift between the bureau and Silicon Valley over encryption.

Bennett now has oversight responsibilities for Silicon Valley. He tells The Associated Press he views his role, in part, as trying to bridge that divide.