Government Surveillance, Safety and Privacy

Published: 2019-09-17 07:00:00
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"Lawmakers, Facing Pressure On Surveillance, Focus On Privacy: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

Aside from helping nab criminals, surveillance measures can also be helpful to drug addicts who have overdosed and lie helpless in the alleys and backstreets of major cities. It might not be possible to completely eradicate the drug menace, as the dealers might at times outsmart the authorities or even collude with some unscrupulous officials. Mitigation of the devastating effects of drug addiction is the only plausible option available. In 2014 alone, an estimated 47,000 Americans died due to overdose, a majority of these deaths (60 percent) caused by heroin and related painkillers such as fentanyl. Various methods have been fronted to address the issue, though some appear controversial to the conservative. A radical measure was adopted where some sites were designated for addicts could shoot themselves with the drug and a nurse or a doctor would be on standby to administer an antidote if necessary. Such centers are not however widespread and most addicts could face imminent death from overdose. Surveillance cameras could come to the rescue of these helpless addicts. Installation of CCTV cameras could be helpful in alerting healthcare personnel of addicts facing imminent danger in the alleys and backstreets who could be rescued. Surveillance is not an infringement on civilian privacy but can be used to save lives at the nick of time.

"Mass Surveillance On Two Continents: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

Detectives in Oregon suspected that an auto shop was running a racketeering business where they bought stolen vehicles, crushed, and sold them as scrap. They however did not have any evidence to bring charges. They decided to install pole cameras across the street to monitor what activities were being carried out. In the end, the police identified 110 stolen vehicles taken to the business. Many complaints were thrown across the board, others claiming that the evidence was obtained illegally and could therefore not be used in the case. Some claimed that the cameras were installed in public places and was therefore an infringement on public privacy. But really the motive behind the installation of the pole cameras was not to violate on anyones privacy, nor to spy on any one passing by the street but to unravel an ongoing crime. Surveillance in this case was not an infringement on the Fourth Amendment as its sole purpose was to nab the perpetrators of an ongoing crime. The financial benefits and inconvenience achieved through this feat of busting the criminals could only best be felt by a car owner who lost his vehicle. Citizens should not be wary of surveillance as it is aimed at securing their well-being.

"Microsoft Sues To Stop Feds From Snooping: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

Schools and other social places such as malls have been soft targets for terrorists and maniac killers both in the United States and other parts around the globe. The Austin University in Texas and the Virginia Tech shootings flood back horrific memories and scenes. Installation of surveillance systems in schools and crowded public places could help the authorities thwart such vile plans before they can materialize. The Cho Seung-Huis and the Charles Whitmans can be detected way earlier if surveillance measures had been instituted. It is only after such events have occurred that people tend to appreciate the importance of surveillance measures in institutions and public places. Whitman had reported that he experienced fits of rage and even told his doctor that he would shoot people from the tower. This red flag was however not taken seriously. Cho also had the same anger problems. Had these individuals been closely watched, they might not have killed as many people as they did.

"Government Surveillance: CURRENT SITUATION: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

There has been widespread condemnation of the use of drones in the recent past. Majority of them had fear drones are used for spying purposes. The truth however is that non-violent drones are used for other operations most beneficial for human existence. Drones are employed in scientific research, wildlife conservation and commerce. While most people fear that drones are specifically designed to be used by the government for surveillance, research has surprisingly proved this notion wrong. 17 percent of drones were used for carrying out scientific research, 14 percent for environmental and wildlife conservation and a further 14 percent for commerce. Surveillance ranked last. Before the advent of drone technology, borders were manned by personnel aided by erection of walls and fences. This was however cumbersome, inconvenient and ineffective. It is now possible to man rough terrains and forbidding conditions in the borders which cannot be accessed by the Border Patrol. Drones are capable of zooming on such areas with their strong cameras and flush out illegal immigrants as well as drug traffickers wishing to smuggle illegal merchandise through the border.

"The Fourth Amendment Implications Of The Government's Use Of Cell Tower Dum...: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

Nowadays, robbers and other criminals are wary of the presence of security cameras installed in strategic places. Various posts have been circulated by the police and private citizens on social media of alleged criminals whose photos were captured by these hidden cameras. These technologies might not prevent the occurrence of a crime, but they can help in apprehending the responsible culprits. Though privacy activists are all up in arms against this move, they cannot do much as these security installations are placed on private properties. Anyone who is intent in keeping the law ought not to be wary of their privacy as these security installations are merely aimed at identifying and recording criminals, not innocent civilians.

"Why Tech Giants Are Now Uniting Against US Surveillance: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

A jailer who was sexually harassing inmates was eventually fired from the Victoria County Sherriffs Office. The officer had asked the female inmate to strip for him on her birthday. The inmates were out in the recreation field in the station when an officer ordered them via the intercom to strip. The officer was later heard asking the ladies not to report the incident, which they did anyway. The officer was later identified after an analysis of video surveillance. Officers who might have had similar intentions will have to think twice because they are aware of the presence of video surveillance watching over their every move. If surveillance can help nab individuals with such behavior, there is no point then of condemning such surveillance measures.

"With NSA And NYPD Under Scrutiny, Is Tide Turning On Surveillance?: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

The public cry for their privacy rights to be upheld seems to waiver depending on circumstances. After the Paris terror attacks, for instance, public opinion softened towards communication companies providing personal encrypted information of its users to federal officials for national security purposes. According to a survey conducted by the Center for International Governance Innovation, approximately 60 percent of American citizens opt that companies should not develop technologies that prevent law enforcement from accessing the content of your online conversation. This would comprise of encrypted data. This only proves that in the long run what matters most is security of the citizens rather than their privacy. After all, what would be the value of privacy when terrorists blow you up? The National Security agency is only interested in prevention of crime before they occur by analyzing the communication of a suspect who might cause harm to the populace. Innocent, law abiding individuals are off the hook.

Transport systems have recently been hot targets for terrorists. The Belgian metro bombing brings vivid memories of this scenario. Video and audio surveillance on these commuter trains might help foil ongoing terror plots before they occur. Usually, the terrorists spy on these trains beforehand before they can exact their vengeance. Possible measures might include the installation of audio devices to pick up and decrypt conversations to analyze the presence of a threat. Such a system has been used by the New Jersey police to apprehend criminal elements. Theft was the most common crime in these commuter trains but with the help of video and audio analysis, it can be easy to apprehend the culprits.

"SURVEILLANCE: Privacy Decisionmaking In Administrative Agencies: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

The government has a mandate of ensuring that its citizens are safe and secure within its borders. It therefore undertakes all measures possible to ensure that the safety of its civilians is assured. To achieve this, the government needs to access information for intelligence gathering so as to help it better prepare from an imminent threat of attack or to thwart unfolding threats. With increased terrorist activities, it is only wise that the government should be given the necessary information to help in better crime prevention and detection. There will be no privacy violation or infringement as only information regarding suspected criminal elements is analyzed. The government should therefore be allowed to undertake surveillance measures on its citizens.

Works Cited

"Lawmakers, Facing Pressure On Surveillance, Focus On Privacy: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

"Mass Surveillance On Two Continents: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

"Microsoft Sues To Stop Feds From Snooping: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

"The Fourth Amendment Implications Of The Government's Use Of Cell Tower Dum...: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

"Government Surveillance: CURRENT SITUATION: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

"Why Tech Giants Are Now Uniting Against US Surveillance: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

"SURVEILLANCE: Privacy Decisionmaking In Administrative Agencies: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

"With NSA And NYPD Under Scrutiny, Is Tide Turning On Surveillance?: MPC Onesearch.". Eds.a.ebscohost.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016.

sheldon

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