As social beings in a technologically advanced society, it is only natural to want to keep up with our friends, family and world through social media, but we tend to avoid the discussion of digital security. We like to click “Accept” before reading a single line in any of the long, tumultuous user agreements for platforms such as Facebook or Instagram. But who really has access to your information that you’ve entered on you online pages? The truth is, just about anyone can have access to it. Hackers may seek your financial information. Corporations may seek to find your buying patterns. Political parties may seek all of the above plus your private opinions!
The idea of security over privacy was popularly introduced following the Patriot Act post 9/11. At the time, it didn’t not seem that boundaries would be crossed and in a post 9/11 society, people craved security and rightfully so. So why are peoples opinions changing now? Some say, “You shouldn’t fear if you do not have anything to hide”, but we do have things we want to hide, like our financial, medical and political information. This brings an interesting discussion to the topic of government surveillance.
While government surveillance is necessary for security, how do we provide checks and balances to any infringement on our rights to privacy in a new digital industrial revolution? Because there is no precedent for this topic of privacy, government surveillance and legislation – things are murky for now. Recently, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerburg testified to congress about Facebook’s breech in security and millions of American’s information lost to foreign and bad actors. Facial recognition is also one of the most controversial aspects of the new digital era. Facial recognition has saved many communities form a lot fo crime, but also raises some eyebrows when discovering just how easily our faces are picked up by surveillance cameras. This is a result of information sharing between companies like Facebook and Amazon to the government.
The only legitimate and reasonable solution to the growing threats of privacy invasion by technology and artificial intelligence, is legislation. Decided by the People for the People. This would ensure a system of checks and balances to the social media giants and the government.