Why societies become more dependent on technology, the need

Why do people think their
personal privacy is breached by the government in the name of national
security? It is very hard to define the fine line between personal privacy and
national security because both have importance in our lives. First, what is personal
privacy and why is it important? Keeping your personal data protected is
becoming an increasingly challenging act in today’s social media-driven world.
Privacy and data protection have become one of the most popular topics in the
realm of information technology. Privacy has many different definitions; this
is a broad concept which is subjective to translation. Simply put, the
underlying idea of privacy is that your personal data, including private
conversations, should remain concealed until you are willing to share with
someone. should remain concealed until you are willing to share with someone. As
societies become more dependent on technology, the need for greater awareness,
action, and education to help average citizen learn to better protect their personal
data is mandatory as well.

On
the other hand, after the 9/11 terrorist attack, national security has been a
major problem not only for the United States but also on a global scale.
Governments need to constantly and consistently monitor the traffic passing
through various communication channels to aid in early detection of planned
malicious activities. We cannot predict without monitoring tools who is the bad
guy and who is the good guy. Only people who are engaged in bad acts have a
reason to want to hide and care about their privacy, good people use internet
for good use and those people are doing nothing wrong and they have nothing to
hide nor any reason to fear the government monitoring them.

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Research
Data

            The study about Facebook’s “likes” proved that they can
reveal vital information about people’s location, sexual orientation,
ethnicity, religious and political views, intelligence and even happiness,
without this information being expressly disclosed (Kosinski, 2013).

Data
Mining and personal privacy

Data
mining has the big role in personal privacy Data mining program’s technologies
and formats are different from those used to achieve operational goals. The
areas that can benefit from the use of data mining include law enforcement,
terrorism prevention, customs control, financial transactions, and
international trade. Data mining applications are widely used in industries for
quick and cheaper analysis of large volumes of data.  Since the September 11, 2001, terrorist
attacks, data mining has been used for detecting threats to National Security.  

 

Government Data Mining vs Personal Privacy

By
collecting and analyzing public and private sector data, government data
mining can identify potential terrorists or other dangerous activities by unknown
individuals, however, this action raises concerns for private citizens as the
government makes access to their personal data without their knowledge. Gaining
insight into decision making in a timely manner requires that companies be able
to consider the enormous amount of information that is available both online
and stored in enterprise databases. (Government Data Mining, 2017). In
the absence of specific laws for privacy, the government can get unlimited
access to a large volume of personal data from behaviors, conversations, and
habits of people who are otherwise innocent. Trouble arises when people with
indirect connections become subjects of further investigation. There are going
to be people swept up merely because the computer programs say they should be a
target.

The
privacy issue has raised concern about the quality and accuracy of the mined
data while it is the right of individuals to know that their personal
information is being collected and how it is being used. The lack of legal
rules for government data mining impacts the ability of companies to use and
share the information with governments in legal ways. Therefore, we need to
find a solution to the ethical implications of data mining to find a balance
between privacy and its use for national security.

Although
government data mining can offer significant benefits, without adequate
processes and controls, it can encroach on constitutional rights including
privacy, freedom of expression, due process, and equal protection. Innocent
people could mistakenly be added to terrorist watch lists, leading to travel
delays, reputation harms and more. Some government employees can abuse database
access and look for information on different persons. Also, Insurance companies
use massive amounts of information to profitably “underwrite” potential
customers, thereby separating risky people from desirable people. To get this
information, insurers access the credit reporting tools and private medical
data. Winston, J. (2017, July
20) The current legal system fails to clearly regulate government data
mining activities, and because of that, the Constitution is implicated by
government data mining. This is a situation that must be put in order.

The
way we blindly click Okay on privacy policies, we are basically putting it all
on the table. The explosion of social media and the use of Facebook as a log-in
for everything from news sites to online retailers gives data companies a much
deeper sight into our personal life and tells them much more about our habits.
And, after we give our information away, we have no idea what companies do with
it. A company can figure out what type of ad is most likely to sway us. There
also is the question of accuracy in general. Without any way to look at our
consumer profiles, people have no idea what marketers and other interested
parties see and how they are judging us. A study in the wake of the Snowden
revelations showed that there was the notable change in
public attitudes about NSA surveillance programs when
questions were modified. For instance, only 25% favored NSA surveillance when
there was no mention of court approval of the program. But 37% favored it when the program was approved by courts. (Lee
Rainie-2016)

Issues

There are various types of data
that secret services and police can legally get their hands on, and that is
shocking. You cannot start your daily commute unless you get to your work under
your own power. There is plenty of data on how you got there if driving, and
your data is captured by motor agency cameras and police vehicles around with
automated number plate reading and geo-location technology. Even if you use public
transport for billing purposes but still it is a very handy way to know exactly
where you were at exactly what time. Your smartphone apparatus is being monitored
always and your activities are watched. Many places have data retention schemes
and other easier ways for government to get a hold of your data. In the
following page, I will explain various types of personal information that often
come under privacy concerns:

Internet

The
ability to control the information that we reveal about ourselves over the
Internet, and who can access that information, has become a growing concern.
Another concern is if the websites that are visited can collect, store, and
possibly personal data of users. Therefore, in order not to give away too
much personal information, e-mails should be encrypted. A major issue with
privacy relates to social networking. According to Landau (2016),
this was facilitated by a combination of changes, including “free” Internet
services, increasing use of mobile
devices and the development of the Internet of Things (IoT) which, in
conjunction, made surveillance much easier to achieve and privacy more
difficult to protect. There are millions of users on Facebook and its
regulations have changed. People may be tagged in photos or have Information
exposed about themselves. It is important to be cautious of what is being said
over the Internet and what information is being displayed as well as photos
avoid giving access to private databases.

RFID and smart Television

 RFID technology consist of tag microchip and
reader. The tag has an electronic circuit, which stores data. Samsung smart tv can
record your voice on sleeping mood. Professor Mike Jackson, a cyber security
expert at Birmingham City University’s Business School, suggest that the audio
data might be used for security purposes. “Perhaps the government would like to
access the information the television collects so that it can better identify
dissident individuals and use it as a tool to combat terrorism,” he said in a
statement released by the university. (Privacy Fears Over Samsung, 2015)

Medical

As
we discuss in early that people do not wish that their medical records be
revealed to others as it might affect their insurance coverage or employment.
Or, it may be because they do not wish for others to know about their medical
conditions or treatments. The United States laws on governing privacy of
private health information are described in HIPAA and the HITECH Act.

Financial

Information
about a person’s financial transactions, including the number of assets,
positions held in stocks or funds, outstanding debts, and purchases can be
sensitive. If criminals gain access to information such as a person’s accounts
or credit card numbers, that person could become the victim of fraud or
identity theft. Information about a person’s purchases can reveal that person’s
history, such as places he/she has visited, whom he/she has contacted with,
products he/she has used, his/her activities and habits, or medications he/she
has used, and the corporations may use this information to target individuals
with marketing customized towards those individual’s personal preferences
without their consent.

Locational

As
location tracking capabilities of mobile devices are advancing, problems
related to user privacy arise. Location data is among the most sensitive data
currently being collected. Another example of location is using the GPS app on
your phone. GPS app just tracks your location and save the data even they tell
you where you parked your car yesterday and time. This is also very dangerous
for your personal privacy. Even when you use essay pass for the toll road that
also tracks your data and save. 

Educational

In
the United Kingdom in 2012, the Education Secretary described the National
Pupil Database as a “rich dataset” whose value could be maximized by
making it more openly accessible, including to private companies. That would
mean a child’s school life including exam results, attendance, teacher
assessments and even characteristics could be available

Social Networking

Social networking sites vary in the
levels of privacy offered. For some social networking sites like Facebook,
providing real names and other personal information is registered on ‘Profile’.
Every time you use Facebook Twitter Dropbox or any of Google service you are
leaving your information behind that the authorities can legally scoop up. This
information usually consists of the birth date, current address, and telephone
number(s). Thus, linking users to their real identity can sometimes be rather difficult.
The individuals can sometimes be identified with face re-identification.

Nearly all the most popular
applications on Facebook, including Farmville, Causes, and Quiz Planet, have
been sharing users’ information with advertising and tracking companies.
Facebook’s can provide any non-personal attributes to advertisers, and it is
the violation of their own policy. If a user clicked a specific ad in a page,
Facebook will send the address of this page to advertisers, which will directly
lead to a profile page, resulting into identification of the users’ names.

Search Engines

Search engines are an easy way to
find information without scanning every site. Keywords that are typed into a
search box will lead to the results. There are many of such search engines,
some of which may lead the user to fake sites which may obtain personal
information or are laden with viruses.

National
Security Agency(NSA) Role in Personal Privacy

People are thinking that government
and other secret agencies misuse their personal information. Intelligence agencies are required by law
to protect the freedoms, civil liberties, and privacy rights of Americans while
accomplishing important national security missions. The National Security
Agency (NSA), as a member of the nation’s Intelligence Community, is also held
accountable for upholding the laws of the land while providing critical foreign
intelligence information to keep America and its allies safe and secure.  (Civil Liberties and Privacy, 2017)

Analysis

After
the September 11, 2001 attacks, the idea that civil liberties had to be reduced
in favor of national security emerged with renewed interest. The irony is that
while security measures intended to protect a liberal democracy, they can end
up damaging the civil liberties and personal privacy:

1. It is common to view this
problem as one of striking the appropriate balance or trade-off between
security and civil liberties.

2. My focus, however, is an aspect
of this general problem, namely the trade-off between privacy and national
security

I
believe, the need for a trade-off between privacy and security is likely true
in certain contexts and with respect to certain aspects of the right to
privacy. However, framing the issue as a contest between privacy and national
security tends to shut down the debate in favor of security. Security has been
described as outweighing civil and political rights, however, the danger with
prematurely permitting the needs of national security to ignore the privacy
values is an important discussion. I think we need to consider whether the adopted
security measure delivers any security and if there does exist a less privacy-attacking
manner to achieve the same level of security. Moreover, I believe, we must consider
the issue whether gains in security are worth the total costs of the security
measure, including privacy costs and the opportunity costs of security enhancing
spending on health, education, poverty, and the environment. I think if the
security versus privacy trade-off is biased in favor of security, particularly
in times of public insecurity, there is a reason to fear that we may too easily
sacrifice rights and freedoms such as privacy. We can see that privacy reducing
counter-terrorism measures also reduce security. In this way, some measure of
protection for privacy may be achieved by analyzing the trade-off as one of
security versus security.

In
my opinion, privacy can be best described as a person’s claim to determine what
information about him or herself is communicated to others, a person’s measure
of control over personal information and over who has sensory access to him or
her. Although these descriptions assist in identifying the nature of privacy,
it is still necessary to explain why it should or should not be protected. Privacy
is said either to promote or to be a necessary component of human interests,
such as human dignity, autonomy, individuality, liberty, and social intimacy.
Therefore, a person who is completely subject to public scrutiny will lose
dignity, autonomy, individuality, and liberty because of the sometimes-strong
pressure to conform to public expectations. Privacy also protects the
individual from another party’s use of his or her information to manipulate,
out-compete, or otherwise exploit the individual. And, we can see that the
value of privacy takes on another dimension because of modern information
technologies.

As
information technology has become more sophisticated and efficient, it has
become possible to collect and integrate large quantities of personal
information. There are a lot of risks involved in the disclosure of true and
relevant information about an individual, and more than that, additional risk
that incorrect or unreliable data may come to be used to make judgments about
whether to apply benefits or sanctions to individuals. Since terrorism
(particularly suicide terrorism) is not easily deterred by punishment after the
fact, the pressure to detect and preempt terrorist plots is strong. Increased
surveillance is, therefore, a predictable response to a dramatic terrorist
attack. Very soon IoT will penetrate even more aspects of the physical
world, including healthcare, homes, and cities. “Smart” things’ capabilities
for ubiquitous and pervasive data collection will represent bigger challenges
and threats to privacy if not implemented correctly. (Ziegeldorf, 2014)

While
decryption of messages by services like WhatsApp may make life much smoother
for government agencies, there is the obvious elephant in the room – the
question of privacy. I believe that WhatsApp should be made to give decrypted
information where a government agency is able to prove a viable threat. Another
issue that would need to be dealt with by the law is who will police the
police?  People’s privacy should remain unbroken but at what cost? Does
maintaining the privacy of an account warrant an attack on the sovereignty of a
nation. That is finally what this issue will need to resolve once for all.

 

Conclusion

Personal privacy has shrunk.
Government secrecy has grown. Law enforcement intrusions are commonplace, both
overt and covert. And while airport security lines hint at how life has changed
following Sept. 11, 2001, the full scope and apparent irrevocability of the
changes nearly defy description. Street cameras track your movements. Strangers
can read your emails. Police can spy on your political gatherings. And it’s all
become so commonplace that most of the time, like the frog in a pot of warm
water, we take it for granted.

I think one reality is very clear,
WhatsApp has become the hunting ground of cybercriminals everywhere and
this is the direction many discussions have taken recently, especially in the
government. If this is to be allowed it will compromise the privacy of the
users. However, a strict mechanism needs to be in place to regulate
surveillance. Technological limitations of companies are challenge whereby
encrypted conversations just cannot be accessed right away. There is no final
resolution on this, but I think, there seems to be a push to extend
intermediary liabilities to the service provider to help curb cyber terror. The
basic problem lies in the license to survey: who will determine whether a individual
is a terrorist? There are also potential jurisdiction challenges. When a server
is in a different country, it is difficult to summon the data. It is
understandable that a foreign state does not want to stand silent while IT
services are misused for cyber-crimes. In many countries, we have no documented
policy on encryption. Service providers are legally mandated to provide
information to the government whenever required to. People have also become
very protective of privacy.

I
believe we cannot make people ‘more secure’ by taking away their privacy and
making them vulnerable. End-to-end encryption is one safeguard that has enabled
us to keep our private conversations private. If the government can find a way
to infiltrate this, so can hackers. Just to facilitate this sort of spying we
cannot put so many people at risk. The argument that “those who have nothing to
hide have nothing to fear” is simply not true. Access to personal chats puts
people at risk of potential blackmail. Also, end-to-end encryption is a blanket
protection, and this does not always work. This will also create two classes in
society, the security forces who will have secure communication, and the rest
of us, who won’t. Laws are made to protect the people: this should be kept in
mind.

We
need new laws that not only protect our data at the personal level but also
enable us to support our country against national threats. For instance, there
should be regulations introduced in our judicial system around the use of
personal data so that information shared and/or collected is not misused. Also,
privacy law should empower the people, so they have the choice to ask the need
for collecting their information. We can adopt rules that both allow the
government to search through the information for our collective benefit and at
the same time protect the Constitutional relationship between the government
and the people. This can be done by including critical protections for
individual rights into all government data mining programs.