10th September 2007
Apparently, the Government (most likely the NSA) has been asking more and more for information pertaining to people's internet usage. What kind of sites you visit, the kind of music you listen to, and your latest tweets.
"I'd shush her zephyr." ~ Zephyr.
7th December 2003
Governments and companies really seem to like the data collection possibilities the internet offers. Even though most of what is done now seems harmless we may be laying the cornerstone for incredibly powerful police states.
The only counter to government interference with this sort of thing is strong encryption. The government's always going to try to take more and more freedom - that's just its nature. Government exists for the purpose of exercising power OVER the people.
Whenever times are good and things are going okay normal rational people don't want to change anything. Normal people don't want to exercise power over others for no reason - they don't want to be in government because they've got nothing to accomplish. So instead the maniacs get in.
Always has been that way, always will. It's one of the reasons why powerful empires tend to stagnate and regress when they've defeated the threats in their environment.
As I've said before - the only difference between a good form of government and a bad one is how often you have to put the politicians against a pockmarked wall.
60% of divorces in the UK have evidence or referances from facebook or other social networks.
The Ministry of defence gets approximately 200 cyber attacks a day. 35% of identity fraud is done via the internet in the UK.
All government statistics. You can see why governments might be interested. Its a shame that a small number of people could ruin privacy for everyone.
But it does not mean that they should be able to know everything about us that we don't want them to know. A majority of us use the internet for news, entertainment, and information. They should be smarter and use better tactics for cyber-crime like how forensic technologies and understanding are becoming better.
No doubt about it, the U.S. is an imperialist state and in recent times become worse than it ever was. Nemmerle was spot on in his opinion/thoughts about it.
So really, they're taking advantage of the situation to gain more power and the unfortunate thing is many won't realize until later what they've given up for "security".
Unfortunately even with this sort of news- which has become commonplace for the most part among many of the western developed states- I find it difficult to convince people to see what problems this may potentially bring.
Like with anything concerning an authority figure, the general attitude seems to be one of "Well, if you aren't doing anything wrong you have nothing to worry about". That kind of detached behavior is rather disturbing to me. Sure the US is using the pretext of cracking down on 'radicals', domestic terrorists, piracy, etc as their reason for these requests, but just being able to have these sort of extraordinary powers in the first place is rather disturbing and a slippery slope.
It ties in well to the US's current intellectual property enforcement laws and those toted as 'anti-piracy'. I had a thread a few weeks back about ACTA and am currently writing one about the Stop Online Piracy Act, the successor to the Protect IP law that was being proposed a few months back that I also made a thread about.
I think the slipper slope argument is rather abstract. I prefer to phrase it, 'Would you trust me?' And then ask them what grounds they really have to trust some future government more than me.
Even with the best of intentions, if you're not prepared to keep control of your interests, eventually someone is going to fuck you.
(post is related to UK) We are already under watch daily and, in the UK, on average appear on camera 4 times on a day out. This statistic is much higher in the city.
The government wants to keep watch on us, yes it is a little authoritarian and reminds us of "big brother is watching you" but I shall bring you to the attention of 'better safe than sorry'. If some big terrorist plot went down, mass crime spree, multiple serial killers etc we would be wanting these things. They may go over the top but you can never be too certain.
Knowing what we do over the internet might be an invasion of privacy but it helps to root out who cyber attacks places such as the MoD, people who are 'cyber bullying' and even things like child porn.
No, you're just wrong as a matter of fact. Hundreds of thousands of people have fought and died for the freedoms we enjoy today. To throw that away, to let a government know everything that anyone does at any time, because a few hundred people might die here and there is abhorrent.
If you were really interested in saving lives you'd work on better road planning to reduce the number of accidents - not giving a corrupt, insane government more and more power to enforce their ever more draconian laws.
If there were a major terrorist attack, if there were a serial killer - I would not call for more CCTV cameras, or more internet restrictions.
We're moving very rapidly towards a situation where it's possible to record and judge every infringement of the law. And if the law made sense - and could be guaranteed to always make sense - and the system that did such surveillance could not be subverted by someone with sufficiently high level access, then that might be something to be praised. However, none of those conditions hold.
The more power government gets to fuck the rest of us over with the closer we come to dancing into hell.
Agreed Nemmerle, to allow more and more breach in the online privacy is congruent to living under a dictator's rule where all your actions are monitored.
Will you allow the government to set up security cameras in your dining room so that the cops can view and record all your family union time? How about in your bedroom? So that the cops can see your private time and detect if you are planning any future treason/murder/rape? That would help them catch so many criminals before they even commit the act. But definitely, no-one would acknowledge that only because the government wants to protect you.