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Sacraficing Privacy For Security Essay

1497 words - 6 pages

Security versus privacy is becoming a major issue in today’s society. Recently, the National Security Agency has been the victim of scrutiny due to allegations of espionage. Similar claims not only stem from the authority, but also come from the public as well. For example, one is enjoying a night out in a restaurant when a group of teenagers arrives. Before it is noticed, some of the teenagers take photos with a cell phone. The picture encompasses most of the area occupied; therefore, every person in that general area is included in it. A few moments later, one teen uploads that picture to various social media websites to share along with captions stating the current location. Although not a single person gave consent, pictures are being circulated with thousands of strangers in the innumerable realms of the internet. Not only are these pictures all over the web and an invasion of privacy, but people viewing those pictures are able to discover recent whereabouts with the simple click of a button. Due to technology’s rapid advancements, similar acts such as these are becoming nearly inevitable. But, these are the very same advancements that help us live in a free and open society. In order to avoid intrusions yet maintain safety, restrictions should be put upon consumer devices, capabilities of security devices, and government abilities.
Google Glass is a new form of technology that has heads turning everywhere. Glass is a wearable computing device with a frame-like construction that is comparable to everyday glasses. The frame consists of nose pads, a touchpad, and a small heads-up display that lies just above the right eye. The problem is not the device itself, but what the device is capable of. A camera lies beside the display and is able to take photos and videos of what the user is viewing.
Current testers mention that it is easy to tape events because it is hard to notice whether or not the device is in use (Downey). Unlike holding up a smartphone to take a photo or video, Google Glass can take them with simple touch gestures and voice commands (Downey).
What does this mean for the public? “If the NSA is Big Brother, the increasing numbers of Google Glass wearers on the street are an army of Little Brothers (Downey).” This quote from Sarah Downey expresses the concern that citizens are having. At the moment, public venues are banning the device. Examples of such places are stores, bars, and restaurants. Besides all the negative criticism, Glass has been confirmed to help police departments with crime investigations and doctors during surgery procedures. Google has even come to say that “User privacy is a top priority and that it won’t allow face-recognition capabilities in the device (Kelleher).” However, the device seems unstoppable with over eight-thousand developers and many more when the device becomes available to the public.
Security cameras are prime examples of government surveillance which has existed for many years and has...

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