Free Essay

Privacy

In: People

Submitted By sparklenshine190
Words 1307
Pages 6
Privacy and Security in America According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, the word privacy is defined as, “the quality or state of being apart from company or observation,” and the word security is defined as, “the state of being protected or safe from harm.” Now the question is, how do these words correlate? The answer is simple. If we did not have security, the idea of privacy would cease to exist. In the United States, we have the freedom to communicate freely, but if we wish to keep that freedom we must accept that the government may watch over us more closely from time to time. Regardless, I believe that the government respects us when it comes to our privacy. In an article posted on The Los Angeles Times website, columnist Andrew Liepman writes about the Snowden scandal and where he believes the government should draw the line between privacy and security.
In May 2013, a former CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) and NSA (National Security Agency) employee named Edward Snowden deliberately disclosed classified information involving the top-secret United States and British government surveillance programs to the media. Liepman, a former CIA officer and deputy director of the National Counterterrorism Center, makes it clear that anyone following the Snowden, “saga,” should be made aware of two very important things. One being that, “many things need to be kept secret in today’s dangerous world, the line between “secret” and “not secret” is fuzzy rather than stark, and if the goal is security, the harsh truth is that we should often err toward more secrets rather than fewer.” Two, the government goes to great lengths to keep the lives of American people private. It was quite easy to see which side the author was leaning towards. I, on the other hand, before reading this article was unsure as to which side I was on. I believe that Americans have the right to live in a private and secure country, but at what cost? How much does the government intervene into our lives?
Liepman continues on in his article and shares many personal experiences to attract the reader to trust his credibility. He states, “I know [these things] because I was on the inside, I have long held security clearances, and I participated in many of the activities [Snowden] describes.” Liepman brings up a topic that many Americans were made aware of, Al Qaeda. He shares that, “[the government] didn’t operate in secrecy because [they] were ashamed…[they] operated in the dark because [they] had to.” Al Qaeda was watching every move that America was making. America is a safe place to live because we have, “made a point of understanding their methods better than they understand ours,” (Liepman). I found this part of the article to be very powerful. After the attacks on September 11th, many Americans, myself included, were unsure of the future. I believe the government was doing what they thought was best. We, as a country, needed to stay quiet in order to avoid another attack.
Liepman makes it clear that the intelligence community is not keeping things hidden from the American people because they do not trust their country; they are simply doing it to keep our country secure from those that wish to do us harm. Referring back to the Snowden scandal, Liepman is frustrated by the frenzy the leaked information cost the government. He, again using personal experiences, tries to convince his readers that there are many moments he wishes the American people could have seen. Liepman says, “I wish I could tell people the amazing things I witnessed during my 30 years in the CIA, that I’ve never seen people work harder or more selflessly, that for little money and long hours, people took it for granted that their flaws would be scrutinized and their success ignored.” As the reader, I found his use of personal stories to be very effective. Why would I not trust someone that was behind the closed doors?
One of my favorite things about Liepman’s article is his use of humor. I find when humor is used it breaks the barrier between the writer and the reader. Many Americans like to believe that when someone states that their privacy has been invaded, they are automatically assume they are being monitored 24/7. Liepman goes on to say that, “the government is not interested in your conversations with your aunt, unless of course, she is a key terrorist leader. More than 100 billion emails were sent every day last year – 100 billion, every day. In that vast mass of data lurk a few bits that are of urgent interest and vast terabytes of tedium that are not.” I truly believe that Americans are too self-conscious. I cannot even imagine how the government would ever be able to follow and document the lives of every American citizen. It would be impossible, and very unrealistic.
Towards the end of the article, Liepman focuses in on how the media has played a big role when it comes to the Snowden scandal. “Many news outlets have spent more time examining ways the government could abuse the information it has access to while giving scant mention to the lengths to which the intelligence community goes to protect privacy. [The government] has spent enormous amounts of time and effort figuring out how to disaggregate the important specks from the overwhelming bulk of irrelevant data,” says Liepman. I do not believe that the American people should trust everything they hear and read through the media. The media is creating the news that will sell, not the news that is the actual, 100% truth.
Liepman shares some of his own truths when it comes to privacy and what really happens within the intelligence community. He witnessed a small amount of employees breaking the privacy rules and ended up having to fire people, “good people,” (Liepman). Even after working for the CIA, Liepman still openly criticizes some of the work of the government. He states that, “some things that are classified probably don’t need to be. That may undermine public trust and dilute our ability to protect the data that really need protecting.” It is no big secret; the American government is not perfect. They are many untrustworthy people within the system, but the good triumphs over. The one thing Snowden accomplished by releasing the information he had access to was gain authority and traffic what information was getting out to the American people. Liepman admits that the government has been slow to react, but that does not mean they do not care about our privacy.
By the end of this article, I was certain of three things. First, the government keeps some things secret in order to protect us from those that wish the United States would cease to exist. Second, the government does not have the time or the resources to listen in on every phone call that is made. We are not important unless we are shielding a terrorist or their future plan of attacks. And finally, we cannot trust what the media tells us. The media is just as clueless as the American people when it comes to what really happens behind government doors. I believe that, despite what Snowden has come out with, the government is doing their best to protect the American people. I believe that the government respects our privacy and I truly believe that we live in a secure country with no lines being crossed.

Works Cited
Liepman, Andrew. "What did Edward Snowden get wrong? Everything - latimes.com." Los Angeles Times - California, national and world news - latimes.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 6 Oct. 2013. <http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/opinionla/la-oe-0811-liepman-snowden-and-classified-informat-20130811,0,3708320.story>.

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Privacy

...Running Head: THE EXISTENCE OF PRIVACY WITH TECHNOLOGY THE EXISTENCE OF PRIVACY WITH TECHNOLOGY Obediah Howard Bellevue University   THE EXISTENCE OF PRIVACY WITH TECHNOLOGY Abstract This research paper will discuss the relationship between privacy and technology. It will attempt to ascertain if technology and privacy can share the same plane of existence. Benefits and deficiencies of a particular technology are not hereditary to that technology, but are depend on their application. The public insists on accountability of technological innovation and assurance that privacy will remain intact. Striking a balance between enabling technology to enrich lives and restricting it from invading privacy has to be addressed. Implementing controls to protect private data is imperative. Technological advances over the years have challenged the public’s perception and expectation of privacy. Technology and one of its preeminent by-products, convenience, will continue to grow exponentially for the foreseeable future; there is no evidence to suggest otherwise. Privacy finds itself in a precarious position in the face of evolving technology. The collective concept of privacy has to be revisited. With the advent of technological innovations and the accessibilities they bring, privacy in its purest form does not exist. From an anthropological perspective, privacy is a relatively modern development. Ancient cultures practiced communal...

Words: 1783 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Privacy

...Privacy ‘The Limits of Privacy’ and ‘The Case for privacy’ are written by Amitai Etzioni and David D. Friedman respectively. Both of them have opposite views about privacy, which Etzioni states that less privacy is good for us and Friedman claims that more privacy makes the world a better place. In this paper, I will argue that Etzioni’s argument fails because privacy is really important for us to protect ourselves. I am going to explain in detail based on three different points in the next three paragraphs. First, in ‘The Limits of Privacy’, Etzioni argues that privacy is not important as many other goods. Based on his argument, he claims that “there are numerous values that trump or take precedence over privacy” (p.254) such as safety. However, I totally disagree his standpoint. Although safety also considers as a part of importance, it does not mean that safety can take priority over privacy consideration. Privacy does have significance effect for us to protect ourselves. Some people may think that it is worth to sacrifice their individual privacy in order to get freedom for safety. Once you give up your own privacy and allow anyone like governments to access to your information freely, your information is disclosed and you cannot get them back anymore. For example, after 9/11 attack in the United States, a lot of new measures about surveillance are introduced. The government can have authorities to wiretap, record or trace orders for email made by all Americans. These...

Words: 1250 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Techonology and Privacy

...monitor the actions and performance of their employees. This is due to worries about; quality of work, productivity employee theft or misuse of company property One of the main ethical issues of the workplace is employee privacy and surveillance. Argument raised is: is it ethical to monitor employees whilst they are in the workplace? Is there privacy for employees and should employees expect Privacy at workplace? Technology has offered various options to help people maintain privacy depending on their situation. At the same time, technology has made it almost impossible for anyone to have privacy. There are devices and programs that can help you get privacy but they can also be used to invade it. Modern society has too many incidences and events that include invasion of privacy, including on national and international levels. Is it possible to ever maintain a level of privacy when you are on the computer, your cellphone, or even in your own home due to technology advancements? In this writing the prominent examples of surveillance at work that I would like to discuss about are surveillance cameras and internet surveillance. Since this topic is based around privacy in the workplace, "privacy" is a key term to be explored. I will analyze the definition of “Privacy” term as well as the reality of using Surveillance today to illustrate for my opinion on this...

Words: 3636 - Pages: 15

Premium Essay

Workplace Privacy

...conflicting interests concerns the privacy rights and considerations of the employees versus the rights of the employer to monitor the activities of its employees. A relaxed, comfortable workplace promotes good morale but too much comfort can result in a workforce that takes their responsibilities for granted. Achieving a happy medium is the ultimate goal. The development of modern technology has provided employers with increased opportunity to monitor the activities of their employees both on the job and off. Telephone, computers, voice mail, and the internet have provided employers with vehicles that were not available just a decade or so ago. Because of the newness of such devices, regulations and laws governing the use of them are not well developed. As a result, at the present time, employers are enjoying virtually unfettered opportunities to listen, watch, and read most anything and everything that their employees are doing while at work. Some more aggressive employers are even using such devices to do the same in regard to their employees’ private lives as well. In limited cases, some corporations and businesses have enacted policies limiting such interventions by the company but there are very few such companies. The concept of privacy is complicated. What is private for one person may not be for another and when it comes to privacy in the workplace the issue becomes even more complicated. From a legal point of view, what constitutes privacy is essentially the expectation...

Words: 1752 - Pages: 8

Free Essay

Privacy

...journal homepage: www.elsevier.com/locate/comphumbeh My privacy is okay, but theirs is endangered: Why comparative optimism matters in online privacy concerns Young Min Baek a,⇑, Eun-mee Kim b, Young Bae c a Department of Communication, Yonsei University, Republic of Korea Department of Communication, Seoul National University, Republic of Korea c Department of Information Sociology, Soongsil University, Republic of Korea b a r t i c l e i n f o a b s t r a c t It is easy to trace and compile a record of individuals’ online activities, and cases of online privacy infringement (i.e., improper use of personal information) have been reported in advanced societies. Based on existing risk perception research, this study examines comparative optimism regarding online privacy infringement (i.e., users tend to believe privacy infringement is less likely to happen to oneself than to others) and its antecedents and consequences. Relying on large-scale online survey data in South Korea (N = 2028), this study finds: (1) comparative optimism is higher when the comparison targets are younger; (2) online knowledge and maternalistic personality traits increase comparative optimism mainly by influencing perceived risk to others, while prior experience of privacy infringement increases comparative optimism mainly by influencing perceived personal risk; and (3) comparative optimism is related to both greater adoption of privacy-protective behaviors and a higher level of support for government...

Words: 5399 - Pages: 22

Premium Essay

Blackboard Privacy

...Privacy and Blackboard: Every Good Service Has a Price Thanks to new technology, Blackboard has become a powerful eLearning tool, but, for such effectiveness, students must pay a price, privacy. Blackboard has an all-seeing system that records data from all students which can be accessed by professors. However, professors tracking students’ academic activities hinder the educational process due to Blackboard’s high level of supervision, therefore, professors should not have access to all databases. Primarily, the excessive monitoring contains information that is needless for the professors. Besides, such data creates prejudice against those who follow the program differently. Moreover, students who are aware of this supervision experience a...

Words: 992 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Privacy Laws

...Privacy Laws and Policies Debate Many employees embark on their employers violating their privacy. Employers are becoming more aggressive on how they screen new potential hires as well as their current employees. Normally employers will conduct criminal background checks, drug testing and sometimes a credit check. The question I am asking is how far is too far? Employees need to become more aware of this situation. Employee privacy laws are limited, which makes it easier for employers to invade workers privacy. Something’s are personal and should remain that way. Therefore I am against communication privacy laws and policies in the workplace. Nothing in life exist with infinity as such I believe employers need to re-evaluate heir approach regarding privacy in the work place and perhaps explore alternative solutions to the problem. There are limits to everything in life and employers’ privacy laws should be no different. For the most part the laws are design to not protect the employee but the employers. Information technology such as computers and internet makes it easier to collect, keep, incorporate, switch ad obtain information and data of a company in a technical manner. Today more companies are wired to the internet and because of this users of the internet are more prone to violations of privacy. In order to restrict access to private information the government enacted privacy laws that enforces the privacy of files communication that is based on the computer. Acts...

Words: 410 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

The Right to Privacy

...The Right to Privacy Privacy is one of the most fundamental values on which our country was founded, and the privacy of an individual is one of the most important rights. So do we really have a right to privacy? According to the article written by Warren and Brandeis “the individual shall have full protection in person and in property of the law”. The purpose of this article written by Samuel Warren and Louis Brandeis is to consider whether the existing laws properly protect the privacy of an individual. Warren and Brandeis purpose for writing such an article was to argue that the laws have to change with the times. Rather than just protect an individual only for “physical interference with life and property” the laws had to evolve with the changing times. Because an individual life gradually expanded so should the laws that was set out to protect them. The authors argue that individuals have the right to enjoy life and to be left alone. The individual have the right to determine how their thoughts and emotions be communicated and how, their thoughts and emotions are expressed. The authors concluded that the thoughts, emotions, and sentiments of individuals needed protection. Protection preventing what could be ultimately written and publish, giving the individual the right to enjoy life. The authors assume that individuals shall have full protection in person and in property, and also the right to life served only to protect the person from battery. They realized that...

Words: 492 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Privacy Actions

...American Management Association (AMA), the top two reasons employers provided for monitoring their employees were performance evaluation and quality control. Workplace monitoring may sound wrong, but it provides many benefits to an organization and its staff members, such as lower operating costs and high production rates. However, in the process of monitoring employees, employees’ privacy rights are violated mainly through computer monitoring, telephone monitoring and background checks. Productivity is one of the main reasons cited by employers for introducing electronic surveillance and employee testing to the workplace. Employers believe that corporate survival demands continuous improvements in employee productivity. Errors, poor products, and slow service hurt business. Therefore, monitoring and testing to identify and correct these problems are considered to be sound management practices (Wright). However, the following will analyze privacy in the workplace from an ethical point of view using three workable theories: Kantianism, Act Utilitarianism, and Social Contract Theory. Privacy...

Words: 3902 - Pages: 16

Premium Essay

Privacy and Confidentiality

...patients’ expectations are becoming higher and now they always want everything best (Rafique & Bhatti, 2014). Nurses are subject to numerous ethical and legal duties in their professional role, including the imperative to maintain patients’ privacy and confidentiality. Beginning in 1893, nurses take the Nightingale Pledge “I promise to do all in my power to maintain and elevate the standard of my profession, and hold in confidence all personal matters committed to my keeping and all family affairs coming to my knowledge in the practice of my calling” (Gretter, 2012). The duty continues today, with hospital policies, state regulations, and federal law aimed at protecting patients’ confidentiality. Critical care providers are often privy to confidential information in the course of clinical practice. The dilemma may arise when confidential information is requested by family members or friends of the patient. Although at times it seems that regulations and laws are so stringent that any disclosure of health care information is forbidden, it may be necessary and appropriate to make disclosures, and the current regulations and laws support the professional judgment in communicating patients’ health information (Wielawski, 2009). Privacy is limited access to a person, the person’s body, conversations, bodily functions or objects immediately associated with the person. Because people have different beliefs and values about...

Words: 9016 - Pages: 37

Free Essay

Privacy and Technolgy

...People’s pace of life is increasingly fast. Numerous people depend on modern technology for work and entertainment because it is more efficient. For instance, Facebook is the most popular social network website in the world, but use of Facebook is becoming a controversial issue as it has potential hazards that threaten users’ privacy. Facebook is a great innovation since it makes people easily contact friends and families, but when users upload their personal information on profile pages, their privacy may be confirmed by strangers. Nevertheless, some people believe that users’ privacy can be protected with technological tools. Although some technology experts claim that companies can protect users’ personal information, modern technology is an invasion of privacy. Using modern technology allows other people to track users’ movements, so it invades people’s privacy. GPS devices can reveal users’ physical location information to others. Leah Yamshon, the author of “Mobile Apps Can Compromise Your Privacy” suggests that if people use GPS technology without sufficient understanding of the system, their movements may be easily tracked by other people (par. 1). Using GPS devices without controlling data transition processes may let other people easily know users’ location, yet most consumers do not know how to control data transition processes. Dishonest people can also steal users’ location information though smart phone applications. Patrick Leahy, the chairman of Senate Judiciary...

Words: 1368 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Digital Privacy

...The Value of Digital Privacy in the IT Age The Value of Digital Privacy in the IT Age Digital Privacy in the IT age is almost extinct. The World Wide Web houses information about anything and everyone. People use the digital technology everyday with the impression that what they are doing is protected from others, unless they chose. While few consumers are fully aware of how their data is being used and even fewer are capable of actively managing it, most individuals expect their digital identity to be treated responsibly and openly: 79%, for example, said companies should be more transparent about use of personal data. There are systems and technologies that people use to gain access to a person’s information. The information obtained can be an advantage or disadvantage. The government has implemented laws for years to try to establish some controls There are many technologies that will allow an individual to research citizens, but the three that will be discussed are Facebook, Intellus, and Google. Facebook is a web based social app use to contact friends. A person can either download for free or buy “apps” for a small amount of money. Apps are games, quizzes and sharing services. These “apps” are consists a host of personal information which includes emails, current locations, sexual preferences of “app” users and their friends. Intelius allows people to access personal records by name, social security number or phone number. People use this system to find family or do...

Words: 963 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

Privacy

...* Explain why you agree or disagree that Americans seem willing to sell their own privacy cheaply while simultaneously craving private information about one another. Americans want to believe that they aren’t willing to sell their own privacy cheaply. They would fill out surveys online to enter to win $1000 to Kmart or a chance to win a new car. People given the opportunity to win something will put all their private self out there. They will give name, number, address, email…they’ll tell you their buying habits and so on for the chance to win a NEW CAR (Forbes, 2012). As Alan Westin states “In democratic societies there is a fundamental belief in the uniqueness of the individual, in his basic dignity and worth as a creature of God and a human being, and in the need to maintain social processes that safeguard his sacred individuality (Halbert, 2010, pp 75)”. People act differently in school, work, with friends, when they go to the grocery store and when the time comes where they need to unwind and be themselves, they should be able to. Whether venting fear, anger, happiness, or anything else they have hidden throughout the day, people want that privacy. This is why people choose to live in a “free society”. * Describe what role you think technology has played in these trends towards privacy. Technology is ever encroaching on people’s lives whether they are aware of it or not. Camera’s videoing the parking lots, video’s watching the apartments’ you live in, certain...

Words: 464 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Workplace Privacy

...workers 06 Gender pay equity Best Practice Guide Workplace privacy 07 Small business & the Fair Work Act 08 Workplace privacy 09 Managing underperformance 10 Effective dispute resolution 11 Improving workplace productivity in bargaining 12 Parental leave Working at best practice Employers should implement best practice when it comes to maintaining privacy in the workplace. It is important for employers, employees and their representatives to know what information may be collected and retained by employers and whether it can be passed on to others. Best practice creates certainty and security for both employers and employees. There is also a checklist to assist with achieving best practice on workplace privacy. This guide illustrates best practice when it comes to workplace privacy. For more specific information regarding your minimum legal obligations and entitlements, contact the organisations listed under the ‘For more information’ section at the end of this guide. This Best Practice Guide explains: what is privacy what is workplace privacy general privacy principles obligations when information is provided to third parties, particularly when given under the Fair Work Act 2009 (FW Act) privacy in relation to email and the internet. Fair Work Ombudsman1 Best Practice Guide Workplace privacy What is privacy? What is workplace privacy? Privacy is the word we give to being able to keep certain information to...

Words: 2400 - Pages: 10

Premium Essay

Privacy Laws

...Privacy Laws and Policies Debate CheckPoint After examining the privacy laws as well as policies within the workplace, I find that companies should insist on such laws and policies in a working environment. Many reasons for my decision exist, the first is companies have reasons for monitoring the computer systems as well as phone lines. After all the software employees operate is the employer's property, and by monitoring the computer systems will assist in preventing the staff. Some employees have been known to use the Internet for personal reasons instead of business purposes; therefore, employees will pay more attention to the Internet than completing the tasks assigned. The Electronic Privacy Communication Act (ECPA) is a law that can protect the employees' privacy; however, one can continue to discover exceptions to the ECPA. One exception is employer's can monitor his or her employees activities so that he or she can prevent unauthorized use. Services like e-mail, telephone, and Internet are other exceptions owned as well as offered by the company; therefore, the company has the right to monitor any employee. The third exception is the consent, in which, "When a party consents to the interception of a communication," (E-Monitoring in the Workplace: Privacy, Legislation, and Surveillance Software, 2006). Organizations desire to make certain workers are using company time proficiently. Companies do not pay employees to deal with personal matters on the clock; however...

Words: 293 - Pages: 2