Big Brother Watch
“I don’t want to live in a world where everything that I say, everything I do, everyone I talk to, every expression of creativity or love or friendship is recorded.” – Edward Snowden
We live in an ironical world and it has been especially so since the launch of reality TV because that is the closest we as regular people can get to watch other fellow beings. If we can entertain ourselves by watching a Big Brother or Survivors and other numerous reality shows, then why are we afraid of being watched? In subtle ways a husband spies on his wife and vice versa, parents keep tabs on their children, employers check their employees, shopping mall owners watch us on CCTV for security reasons, whichever way you look at it we are being watched.
But what happens when the Government decides to watch its citizens? Edward Snowden broke the news to the world that intelligence agencies watch he and us had the proof and he is currently in Moscow under asylum. While it may sound like a Hollywood film, right here at home we are not far from it. The Kenyan Government announced that they need to tap cell phones for the primary reason to fight the war on counterfeit devices and eventually catch tax evaders through the mobile money transactions. There has been a court order to stop this plan, which seems to have started almost since last year but maybe this temporary step may not be enough.
Currently there are easily over 10 countries where their respective Governments are watching their citizens. In most cases the idea is to prevent rising opposition to the current state of power. Thus, with our upcoming General Elections, is there need for panic? Can these counterfeit devices not be discovered in any other way? Why is there a need to check private data to determine these bogus devices? What will happen when we start to use smart devices such as refrigerators, talking speakers etc to monitor us? Did you know what SMART also stands for Surveillance Marketed As Revolutionary Technology?
When you watch to catch someone, have you noticed how they run further? Well then, a secret is not safe until it becomes one.
“If you want to keep a secret, you must also hide it from yourself.”
― George Orwell, 1984
This entire exercise is an intrusion of privacy. However if it can stop a terror attack or assist in catching the perpetrators then it keeps us safer. Seriously intelligent smugglers will not leave traces of their counterfeit business like this.
As a citizen you need to figure out where the buck stops. Privacy matters more or nabbing criminals? Unfortunately if hackers access your data and use it against you then there can be dire personal consequences.
If you are not guilty then why do you have to worry?