COMM 120 Privacy vs Security Discussion

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Write a response to the following statement:

In this ever-changing world of technology and digital access, how is our personal privacy and security being affected? Our lives are becoming more and more dependent on technology. We use mobile phones to communicate, shop, hold digital planners, and play games. The problem is that most people never bother to read the extra-long terms and services agreement on most apps and services. Companies now are using intricate algorithms to see what you look at on other apps to tailor experiences and ads to engage you more and create more profit. There is also the ever-present social media factor in digital security. People are so comfortable sharing locations and events and pictures with everyone without thinking about the potential consequences. There also exists something called bulk communications data monitoring, “which involves the large-scale collection, retention and subsequent analysis of communications data” (1). The proposed benefit is the ability to predict potential future national security concerns and plans for violence. The collection of communication is all compiled into a comprehensive view of information that help identify unknown persons in crimes, link anonymous profiles online to people, and provide intelligence leads on communications between suspected individuals (2). The problem, however, is whether this lack of personal privacy is actually an infringement on natural human rights. One of the common potential harm arguments to this type of surveillance is that most people involved are law-abiding citizens just going about their normal lives but are now being raised into the realm of potentially suspicious activity. In a typical situation, the probable cause that allows a look into your private communications is coming after and caused by the surveillance itself (3). So is this type of security overall helpful or stepping too far in the name of progress?

(1)(2)(3) Murray, & Fussey, P. (2019). Bulk Surveillance in the Digital Age: Rethinking the Human Rights Law Approach to Bulk Monitoring of Communications Data. Israel Law Review, 52(1), 31–60.

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