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Privacy in the new world
Privacy has again been questioned with the controversy of the U.S spying on the rest of the world is an issue that has been dragged to the front of this week’s news.
Ed Snowden – a former CIA man and whistleblower who has fled to Hong Kong – claims the NSA has had access to data held by nine of the world’s top internet companies, including Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Skype.
This huge and escalating story has provoked other media spin offs and debates that ask the question – is this realty fair? And is it right for the governments to have access to our private information? Many people have stood up for what they believe is the right moral argument. Others have adopted more of a practical approach.
Quite frankly – in an ideal world where no violence and crime exists I would say that people’s lives, emails and conversations should remain private. Unfortunately this simplistic ideology does not and probably will never exist. We live in a world of good and evil. A world that populates and inhabitants the very people that seek to destroy it.
It was revealed yesterday that Intelligence obtained from a secret US eavesdropping operation helped prevent terror attacks at the 2012 Olympics. According to William Hague the intelligence obtained by this controversial relationship with the U.S has stopped many terrorist and espionage plots against this country, and has saved many lives.
Spying’s a necessity for survival
We only ever hear of the CIA or MI6’s failures and never their successes. We take it for granted that there was no terror attack during the Olympics. Do we think that we just got lucky? Or that terrorist didn’t fancy that particular event? No – behind any event there is the potential for an attack. The most effective way of minimising an attack is through intelligence. Successful terrorists don’t tend to gossip much and therefore this intelligence isn’t readily available, it’s for us to find it and this discovery is sometimes made at the expense of our privacy.
If these practices were stopped and consequentially we had less access to intelligence who knows how many attacks would slip through the cracks. One thing for sure – If these terrorists do succeed not only do lives get lost but the financial markets crash and people can lose all their money. If we look back to 9/11 – the markets crashed and people lost everything. We don’t ever want to see anything like that again. People can take out insurance on their money and wealth by protecting it with physical gold. This is the one of very few asset classes that rockets in times of terror. Hopefully we won’t have to rely on this factor to influence the price and instead rely the biigest influencer over the last 100 years; inflation, currency devaluations, bank failures, political uncertainty and are ever-increasing national deficit.