National Security Versus Personal And Individual Privacy In The War Against Terrorism

Are US and UK Intelligent agencies actually able to sift through all electronic data and transaction to identify terrorist or are they, as Annie Machon, former M15 intelligence officer and whistleblower, claim, turning the internet into a tool of oppression for the use of the US and UK totalitarianism and undermining democracy. She uses East Germany as an example, pointing out that the government had first went after journalists, trade unionist and activists but the domineering government got worse.

Bella Sankey, policy director of Liberty, a civil liberties organization, calls privacy a public, social and collective good and recommends that Edward Snowden’s revelations about surveillance activities be used to overhaul intelligence agencies. UK’s national security boss, Robert Hannigan, attacked technology companies, claimed that privacy is not an absolute right and is in denial about the abuses reported by whistleblowers. Liberty has a case filed with the Investigatory Powers Tribunal to challenge surveillance measures in the UK, hoping to change laws and force debate.

Snowden’s reports caused technology companies to increase the availability of encryption services for the public, but, according to Jamie Bartlett, director of the centre for analysis of social media Demos, that terrorist and criminals have accesses as well and this makes it harder to prevent attacks said Alexei Beltyukov developer of the Solvy service. This led to speculation about a return to “old-fashion human intelligence” and a new settlement about the types of intelligence to allow for a better system of oversight. Also needed is a way for whistleblowers to report of wrongdoing by agencies without being prosecuted and treated as outcast or traitors.

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