Why Privacy Matters Even if You Have ‘Nothing to Hide’

Three surveillance cameras on the corner of a ...
Image via Wikipedia

I like my privacy. Most of you do too. However, most times the first thing people throw in your face when you complain about phones tracking your every move, governments reading your emails, or Google getting to know everything about you, is that if you are doing nothing wrong, why worry? Only criminals should worry, right?

Finally someone has written a fantastic article on why the nothing-to-hide argument is flawed and should be challenged…It’s a great read. We must push back and say that our freedom and our privacy are the cornerstones of democracy. Enjoy the read. The link is at the bottom of the post…

The nothing-to-hide argument pervades discussions about privacy. The data-security expert Bruce Schneier calls it the “most common retort against privacy advocates.” The legal scholar Geoffrey Stone refers to it as an “all-too-common refrain.” In its most compelling form, it is an argument that the privacy interest is generally minimal, thus making the contest with security concerns a foreordained victory for security.

The nothing-to-hide argument is everywhere. In Britain, for example, the government has installed millions of public-surveillance cameras in cities and towns, which are watched by officials via closed-circuit television. In a campaign slogan for the program, the government declares: “If you’ve got nothing to hide, you’ve got nothing to fear.” Variations of nothing-to-hide arguments frequently appear in blogs, letters to the editor, television news interviews, and other forums. One blogger in the United States, in reference to profiling people for national-security purposes, declares: “I don’t mind people wanting to find out things about me, I’ve got nothing to hide! Which is why I support [the government’s] efforts to find terrorists by monitoring our phone calls!”

via Why Privacy Matters Even if You Have ‘Nothing to Hide’ – The Chronicle Review – The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Advertisements