Americans Choice: Security Or Privacy

Submitted By bstauffer68
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Pages: 4

Americans’ Choice: Security or Privacy
CMGT/441 Introduction to Information Systems Management

In light of the recent news story about the phone data collection effort by the National Security Agency (NSA), the right to privacy and government is at the forefront of many minds. FAQ: What the NSA Phone Snooping Uproar is All About written by Jaikumar Vijayan (2013) provides the details and concerns with the NSA’s secret data collection. The topic of privacy is evaluated for the level of importance in relation to the programs used to identify and stop terroristic attacks. On June 5, 2013, The Guardian, a national newspaper, published a copy of a secret court order showing the NSA has been receiving a daily detailed report on all domestic and international calls made by Verizon customers (Vijayan, 2013). The belief is that Verizon is not the only carrier who has supplied data to the NSA. The news of the data collection effort has re-ignited concerns with privacy advocates. The concern is the government is using 9/11 anti-terror laws as justification for domestic surveillance (Vijayan, 2013). The collected data is call metadata records consisting of originating and dialed number, call time and duration, location data, calling card numbers, international mobile station equipment identity numbers, and other unique device identifiers (Vijayan, 2013). Data not collected is subscriber name and address information and the content of the phone conversation (Vijayan, 2013). Privacy advocates concerns are the metadata collected will allow the NSA to build a detailed profile of every Verizon customer (Vijayan, 2013). The metadata can be combined with other data sets to allow data mining on any individual who has used Verizon in the past few months (Vijayan, 2013). The privacy advocates view the data collection as dragnet surveillance (Vijayan, 2013). The public reaction is mixed. Many individuals raised concerns about privacy, government overreach, and lack of transparency (Rosenbaum, 2013). Other individuals said national security was most important (Rosenbaum, 2013). Some individuals were not fond of the data collection at first because of privacy but approved if it helped find and combat terrorists (Rosenbaum, 2013). The NSA is collecting data to help counterterrorism agents keep track of the communication of known or suspected terrorists and is viewed as vital to protecting the nation again terrorists threats (Vijayan, 2013). The chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee shared that the data collection has already foiled multiple attempted terrorist attacks inside the United States (Deluca & Hunt, 2013). The government is insistent that there are privacy controls in place governing the kind of data that is accessed and how the data can be used (Vijayan, 2013). The collected data is court-authorized and compliant with all public statutes (Vijayan, 2013). The agency stores the data, but cannot use it without first obtaining a warrant from a court that meets in secret (Brown & Fritze, 2013). President Obama stated the lawmakers were fully briefed on the programs and both Congress and the