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Liberty Safe in full damage-control mode over backlash for giving FBI backdoor access to customer's safe — but it's not working
ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images

Liberty Safe in full damage-control mode over backlash for giving FBI backdoor access to customer's safe — but it's not working

Liberty Safe, the prominent gun safe company, promised Wednesday to give customers more freedom to prevent unwanted obtrusions into their safes.

What is the background?

The company is facing intense backlash after admitting it provided a customer's safe code to the FBI . That customer, an accused Jan. 6 protester , had his safe breached last month after the FBI, with a search warrant in hand, asked Liberty Safe to give the bureau the code to the customer's safe — and the company complied.

Liberty Safe confirmed in a statement that company "protocol is to provide access codes to law enforcement if a warrant grants them access to a property."

Ironically, Liberty Safe claims it is committed "to protecting the personal property and 2nd amendment rights of our customers" and "to preserving our customers' rights, and we will remain unwavering in those values."

What is happening now?

Liberty Safe released a statement late Wednesday announcing a policy change that allows customers to erase their safe codes from Liberty Safe's records.

"Effective immediately, existing customers can visit www.https://www.libertysafe.com/pages/combination-removal and fill out the form to have records of the access codes expunged," the company said in a statement. "In the coming weeks, we will be releasing a feature that gives every new customer this option when registering their safe."

"This change allows customers to take control of how their information is stored and protected," the statement added. "We understand that many of our customers are willing to assume responsibility of safeguarding their own combination. While those who opt out of our data storage process will have limited recourse in case of a lost combination, we respect their choice and are here to support them in the way that's best for them."

Importantly, Liberty Safe is also changing how it cooperates with law enforcement.

Now, instead of providing access codes when presented with a warrant, Liberty Safe "will require a subpoena that legally compels Liberty Safe to supply access codes."

The caveat, the company noted, is that subpoena compliance can only happen if someone's code remains in the company's database.

For many customers, however, the policy change is too little, too late.

  • "Seems like an admission that you provided access codes without a subpoena in the past. Sorry. Trust lost forever. You'll never get mine back," one person said .
  • "How can we trust there aren't any more secret access codes, though?" one customer asked .
  • "Well, good on you for making the policy change. But the damage is already done. If the FBI had a warrant for the homeowners' property, it should be the homeowners' responsibility to give the code," another person said .
  • "[W]hy in God's name would you provide the code without a subpoena? Where is the apology?" one person asked .
  • "The last thing I’m doing is visiting your website and giving you MORE of my personal information," one person said .
  • "The problem is you don’t actually stand for liberty. You are doing this because you were called out- Not because of your core values. Bye," another person responded .
  • "Your apology is missing the apology part," one person observed .
  • "Opt out? How about YOU should have ASKED customers if they want to opt in," another person suggested .

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