Technology Security Essay

Submitted By jigiannini
Words: 1390
Pages: 6

Since the 1980s, the policy debate around technology and privacy has been transformed. There have been many changes in the technical, economic, and policy domains that have changed the way we can think about our government today. The changes include the emergence of digital communications networks on a global scale; emerging technologies for protecting communications and personal identity; new digital media that support a wide range of social relationships; a generation of technological privacy activists.
“In the United States, concern about privacy arose through popular works by Ernst and Schwartz (1962), Brenton (1964), and Packard (1964), as well as a detailed scholarly treatment by Westin (1967). The premise underlying the Code of Fair Information Practices was the same in both places: organizations that collected personal information about individuals had certain responsibilities, and individuals had rights against organizations in possession of personal information (Arge).” Some of the most important issues facing Americans in this age of constantly evolving and improving technology are privacy. “It is definitely true that private entities have violated individual privacy, but more often than not, it is under direct government order that they do so. Telecommunication companies coughed up the private information about their customers when the Bush administration forced them to do so; similar to how they capitulated to the wishes of the BART authorities. And can you blame them? When an armed man demands your wallet, you surrender it. I am not letting wireless cell phone companies off the hook, but simply showing that they tend to violate privacy when ordered to do so (Taylor)”.
(In 1967, the Supreme Court ruled that telephone conversations were protected by the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution, requiring the government to obtain a warrant from a judge in order to be able to listen in. The next year, in Title III of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968, Congress set out detailed standards for the government to follow when tapping a phone line. Title III, also known as the Wiretap Act, made it a crime to intercept telephone calls except with a judge’s warrant or under some relatively narrow exceptions (Cdt)”.
It was revealed that the FBI has been spying on the website Antiwar.com since at least 2004. The FBI supposedly in charge of providing centralized intelligence and police work and catching violent criminals. This shows that although the government is looking through privacy websites and accounts, they are doing it for a good purpose to help people stay safe from dangerous people. ("The Privacy Act of 1974 identified protections for personally identifiable information," said Gregory C. Wilshushen, director of information security issues at GAO and author of the report. "However, it refers to systems in which information is retrieved by personal identifiers [like names or Social Security numbers]. There are systems where information isn't retrieved that way, so agencies consider that they are not covered by this limitation. There is a gap in the law (Testa)”.
When Congress passed the Electronic Communications Privacy Act in 1986, The ECPA focused on intercepting electronic communications. They believed the Fourth Amendment was traditionally tied to a person's house, so courts had a difficult time accommodating new technologies for which physical space is largely irrelevant. (Part of privacy law is establishing an effective mechanism for informing the public about the information being collected and how it's being used. "Now, notices are made in the Federal Register," Wilshusen said. "There are concerns about the public not being effectively informed by this method (Testa)”. As the Federal Government builds for the future, it must do so in a safe and secure, yet transparent and accountable manner. Architecting for openness and adopting new technologies have the potential to make devices and…