It law | Information Systems

Government and private sector databases contain personal identifying information and historical records about residents of the US. Proposals for a national identification system arise regularly. Privacy advocates express concern about potential misuses of a national identification system. Considering this information with that from your textbook and external readings, please comment on the following:

Will the benefits of a national identification system countermand violations of individual privacy invasive surveillance?
What are the implications for the long term storage and later use of historical data?

  1. Databases contain sensitive personal information about citizens and residents in the U.S. (and elsewhere). In decades past, this capability was largely under the control of the private sector. Insurance companies, credit reporting agencies, banks, and other commercial entities regularly compiled this data and shared it “for business purposes”. In the past, the threat to individual privacy stemmed from these sources (because of the perceived lack of controls).

Today, we face different challenges. Now, the Government can access Governmental and key private sector systems easily stemming from integration efforts since 9-11. New initiatives for oversight and surveillance are proposed regularly. This causes many to worry in our post 9-11 environment that the Government has too much power that is too easily abused or misused (Ala, Edward Snowden).

Will privacy data matter in the future?
Is it already too late to control invasions of our privacy given the explosion of databases and surveillance technologies?
Will we continue to waive our rights from monitoring every time we agree to use a new technology? Example: cell phones used to be solely radio-telephones. Now, they have GPS’ built into them making them personal tracking devices of movements. Example #2: future medical procedures will involve embedding novel technology devices in our bodies for monitoring, healing, etc. Insurance companies may require us to grant them access to all that we do with our bodies involving these novel tech. procedures to “cover their interests about our qualification for insurability”).

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