Now playing
01:05
Comey: No absolute privacy in America
5 ways us can stop hackers orig nws_00010722.jpg
5 ways us can stop hackers orig nws_00010722.jpg
Now playing
01:37
5 ways the US can stop hackers
Now playing
04:21
GPS spoofing: Russia's new cyberweapon?
russia DNC hacking RON 2_00000808.jpg
russia DNC hacking RON 2_00000808.jpg
Now playing
02:30
US blames Russia for power grid cyberattacks
Now playing
02:28
US blames North Korea for cyberattack
The Kremlin wall and towers dominate the skyline at the Red Square in Moscow, on March 2, 2012. Russia on March 4 votes in presidential elections expected to send Vladimir Putin back to the Kremlin after his four year stint as prime minister.  AFP PHOTO / SERGEI SUPINSKY        (Photo credit should read SERGEI SUPINSKY/AFP/Getty Images)
SERGEI SUPINSKY/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
The Kremlin wall and towers dominate the skyline at the Red Square in Moscow, on March 2, 2012. Russia on March 4 votes in presidential elections expected to send Vladimir Putin back to the Kremlin after his four year stint as prime minister. AFP PHOTO / SERGEI SUPINSKY (Photo credit should read SERGEI SUPINSKY/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
03:34
NYT: US spies paid Russian who promised cyberweapons, Trump intel
BERLIN, GERMANY - DECEMBER 28: A participant sits with a laptop computer as he attends the annual Chaos Communication Congress of the Chaos Computer Club at the Berlin Congress Center on December 28, 2010 in Berlin, Germany. The Chaos Computer Club is Europe's biggest network of computer hackers and its annual congress draws up to 3,000 participants. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
Sean Gallup/Getty Images
BERLIN, GERMANY - DECEMBER 28: A participant sits with a laptop computer as he attends the annual Chaos Communication Congress of the Chaos Computer Club at the Berlin Congress Center on December 28, 2010 in Berlin, Germany. The Chaos Computer Club is Europe's biggest network of computer hackers and its annual congress draws up to 3,000 participants. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
Now playing
01:47
NYT: NSA hack bigger than Snowden
A roll of "I Voted" stickers, which are handed out to residents after they vote, sit on an election officials table at a polling place on November 4, 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri.  In last Aprils election only 1,484 of Ferguson's 12,096 registered voters cast ballots. Community leaders are hoping for a much higher turnout for this election. Following riots sparked by the August 9 shooting death of Michael Brown by Darren Wilson, a Ferguson police officer, residents of this majority black community on the outskirts of St. Louis have been forced to re-examine race relations in the region and take a more active role in the region's politics. Two-thirds of Fergusons population is African American yet five of its six city council members are white, as is its mayor, six of seven school board members and 50 of its 53 police officers.  (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Scott Olson/Getty Images
A roll of "I Voted" stickers, which are handed out to residents after they vote, sit on an election officials table at a polling place on November 4, 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri. In last Aprils election only 1,484 of Ferguson's 12,096 registered voters cast ballots. Community leaders are hoping for a much higher turnout for this election. Following riots sparked by the August 9 shooting death of Michael Brown by Darren Wilson, a Ferguson police officer, residents of this majority black community on the outskirts of St. Louis have been forced to re-examine race relations in the region and take a more active role in the region's politics. Two-thirds of Fergusons population is African American yet five of its six city council members are white, as is its mayor, six of seven school board members and 50 of its 53 police officers. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Now playing
03:15
Homeland Security Chief: Hackers targeting voting systems
CNN/File
Now playing
02:17
Source ties Russia to Wikileaks emails
Reuters
Now playing
02:21
Putin ally warns of 'war' if US elects Hillary Clinton
Getty Images
Now playing
02:30
Hackers playing US for entertainment?
Russian President Vladimir Putin visits a polling station during parliamentary elections in Moscow on September 18, 2016. / AFP / POOL / GRIGORY DUKOR        (Photo credit should read GRIGORY DUKOR/AFP/Getty Images)
AFP/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
Russian President Vladimir Putin visits a polling station during parliamentary elections in Moscow on September 18, 2016. / AFP / POOL / GRIGORY DUKOR (Photo credit should read GRIGORY DUKOR/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:15
Is hacking group tied to Russian intelligence?
A man walks to use a voting booth March 1, 2016, at one of the Virginia primary election polling stations at Colin Powell Elementary School, in Centreville, Virginia.
Voters in a dozen states will take part in "Super Tuesday" -- a series of primaries and caucuses in states ranging from Alaska to Virginia, with Virginia the first to open its polling stations at 6:00 am (1100 GMT).  / AFP / PAUL J. RICHARDS        (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)
PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images
A man walks to use a voting booth March 1, 2016, at one of the Virginia primary election polling stations at Colin Powell Elementary School, in Centreville, Virginia. Voters in a dozen states will take part in "Super Tuesday" -- a series of primaries and caucuses in states ranging from Alaska to Virginia, with Virginia the first to open its polling stations at 6:00 am (1100 GMT). / AFP / PAUL J. RICHARDS (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
01:52
US officially blames Russia for political hacks
FBI Director James Comey (R) speaks as Assistant Attorney General for National Security John Carlin (L) listens during a news conference for announcing a law enforcement action March 24, 2016 in Washington, DC.
Alex Wong/Getty Images
FBI Director James Comey (R) speaks as Assistant Attorney General for National Security John Carlin (L) listens during a news conference for announcing a law enforcement action March 24, 2016 in Washington, DC.
Now playing
04:31
Assistant attorney general to hackers: We'll find you
Now playing
01:27
Fact check: Was Russia behind the DNC cyberattacks?
WESTBURY, NY - SEPTEMBER 26:  Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton speaks during a debate-watch party at The Space at Westbury on September 26, 2016 in Westbury, New York. Tonight was the first of four debates for the 2016 election - three presidential and one vice presidential.  (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images North America/Getty Images
WESTBURY, NY - SEPTEMBER 26: Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton speaks during a debate-watch party at The Space at Westbury on September 26, 2016 in Westbury, New York. Tonight was the first of four debates for the 2016 election - three presidential and one vice presidential. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Now playing
01:50
Clinton's Wall Street speeches leaked?

Story highlights

But, he said, Americans "have a reasonable expectation of privacy"

Comey's leadership of the FBI has been marked by controversy

(CNN) —  

FBI Director James Comey warned Wednesday that Americans should not have expectations of “absolute privacy,” adding that he planned to finish his term leading the FBI.

“There is no such thing as absolute privacy in America; there is no place outside of judicial reach,” Comey said at a Boston College conference on cybersecurity. He made the remark as he discussed the rise of encryption since 2013 disclosures by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden revealed sensitive US spy practices.

“Even our communications with our spouses, with our clergy members, with our attorneys are not absolutely private in America,” Comey added. “In appropriate circumstances, a judge can compel any one of us to testify in court about those very private communications.”

But, he also said Americans “have a reasonable expectation of privacy in our homes, in our cars, in our devices.

“It is a vital part of being an American. The government cannot invade our privacy without good reason, reviewable in court,” Comey continued.

In the last four months of 2016, the FBI lawfully gained access to 2,800 devices recovered in criminal, terrorism and counterintelligence investigations and the FBI was unable to open 43% of those devices, Comey said.

Americans’ desire for privacy and security should never be viewed as incompatible, he said.

“We all value privacy. We all value security. We should never have to sacrifice one for the other,” Comey said. “Our founders struck a bargain that is at the center of this amazing country of ours and has been for over two centuries.”

02:55 - Source: CNN
FBI director at center of many controversies

Comey’s leadership of the FBI has been marked by controversy in the wake of the bureau’s handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email controversy and President Donald Trump’s baseless accusations that President Barack Obama ordered the wiretapping of phones at Trump Tower.

He did not address the wiretapping claim nor WikiLeaks’ recent claim that it obtained internal CIA documents.

Comey did, however, say he plans to finish out his 10-year term.

“You’re stuck with me for about another 6 1/2 years, and so I’d love to be invited back again,” he said.

CNN’s Casey Riddle contributed to this report.