Those who have nothing to hide quote
7 reasons "I have nothing to hide" is the wrong reaction to mass surveillance
Do you think you have nothing to hide? We'll give you seven reasons why you should protect yourself!
When we launched the #UnfollowMe campaign to end mass government surveillance, Amnesty's Facebook and Twitter pages were flooded with comments. Many told us: "If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear." The rationale is that if there is nothing to hide, it doesn't matter whether governments want to collect all the data, emails, phone calls, webcam images, and internet searches because they won't find anything that is of interest to them. That sounds logical at first, but it's wrong - and we'll tell you why.
Much has been written on the subject, but in search of answers, we focus here on the reactions of Amnesty supporters on Facebook. We explain, through your own comments, why "nothing to hide" is the wrong answer to government mass surveillance.
1. "Privacy should be protected unless something has been done that gives rise to reasonable suspicion." Karine Davison
Usually governments run targeted Surveys when they observe a person or group for a specific, legitimate reason. To do this, they need a court order, for example to monitor the internet activities of a person who is suspected of criminal activity. When everyone is arbitrarily observed, our communications are monitored without there being any legitimate suspicion that we are involved in shady machinations. Then governments treat us all like potential criminals and every detail of our private lives as suspicious. And there are hardly any laws to control their actions.
2. "So a webcam in your bathroom or bedroom is no problem either?"
You might think privacy isn't important to you, but it probably is. We do things at home every day that we would not do in public. This is not because we have something to hide, but because we prefer to keep some parts of our lives to ourselves. John Oliver, the host of the US television show "Last Week Tonight," asked people in New York what they would think of governments viewing their personal nude photos (although he put it a little more suggestively). Unsurprisingly, people find the idea of government officials looking at their most personal pictures less pleasant.
3. "By the way, if you want privacy, you don't necessarily have something to hide."
James Earl Walsh
Mass surveillance is an unprecedented invasion of ordinary people's privacy. Never before have we accepted that governments can monitor all of our activities in order to protect us. Imagine if we were told they wanted to install cameras in our living rooms or microphones under tables in coffee shops to make sure criminals were caught. If mass surveillance on the Internet were carried over to the real world, it would look like this. The governments are thus far exceeding their power limits and every time we say we have "nothing to hide", we give our consent. Instead, we should say to governments, "I have nothing to hide and my private business is none of your business."
4. "Nothing to hide - as long as you fully agree with the worldviews and policies of your government." Emily Kate Goulding
Like the right to demonstrate, our privacy is something that only becomes important once it is taken away from us. In the course of history, apparently harmless information about people has been used time and again to politically persecute them in crisis situations. You may trust that your current government is looking for criminals and beyond doing anything with your data. But what happens if your future government drifts in a totalitarian, dictatorial or fascist direction? In such a situation, authorities could collect data to identify groups who hold beliefs other than themselves and act against them. You could use the information to persecute journalists and activists or to discriminate against minorities.
5. "The prerequisite is that those behind the cameras care about the interests of the people." Roland van der Sluijs
You may think you did nothing wrong, but you are blindly relying on the people spying on your data to see it that way. NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden told us, "These people are looking for criminals. You can be the most innocent person in the world, but if someone looking for signs of delinquency searches your records, they won't find you - they'll find a criminal . "
6. "Do you really want a life in which you spiritually pray after everything and submit to everything?" Jia Hengjian
Studies have shown that people change their behavior when they know they are being monitored. Now that we learn more about the computer algorithms and databases used to predict criminal activity, we will become more cautious about our own statements and activities on the Internet. We will avoid expressing controversial opinions or doing anything that could be misinterpreted. Because of this, we will live in a conformist society in which no one dares to question the status quo.
7. "If we have nothing to hide, why are we being monitored?"
In a nutshell, the best answer to "I have nothing to hide" is always: "If I haven't done anything wrong, why is my privacy being violated?"
Here is a selection of other great comments from you guys:
"Privacy is NOT there to be hidden, it was never meant to be. It is there to be protected. Period."
"Man, you must have the most mindless life imaginable when you really have nothing to hide from anyone."
"Just because you're not doing anything wrong doesn't mean you shouldn't have a right to privacy."
"We have a RIGHT to privacy. If someone is suspected of a criminal act, a court order should be obtained to monitor the person."
"If any opinion that deviates from the status quo is illegal, resistance becomes almost impossible. As long as you don't question what those in power are doing, you are safe. Hurray."
Roland van der Sluijs
"Like it or not, we have a right not to be spied on without reasonable suspicion."
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