Reminder: The FBI Doesn't Just Want To Get Inside One Single iPhone

The San Bernardino case may have ripple effects on many other cases.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey told Congress on Tuesday that he understands the outcome of the San Bernardino iPhone encryption case will set a precedent for other cases.

Apple Inc has said complying with a court order to grant the FBI access to data on an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino shooters would set a dangerous precedent that would require it to weaken security in other phones.

Comey said last week that forcing Apple to unlock the phone was "unlikely to be a trailblazer" for setting a precedent for other cases.

On Tuesday, Comey said the FBI is asking for access to that specific phone but understood the decision would set a precedent for similar cases.

Asked how many iPhones the FBI would like Apple to unlock, Comey said he could not name a number but that there were "a lot" of phones that hold information needed for law enforcement investigations.

 (Reporting by Julia Edwards; Editing by Bill Rigby)