Expert In Cybersecurity Warns About Dangers of Big Data

In an interview with Dan Bongino, Cybersecurity expert Morgan Wright warned that the United States was going down a dangerous path with regard to big data collection. He warned that the lines were being blurred about what federal agencies could do as part of mass surveillance, noting he did not want the US to turn into China or North Korea.

This is not a new debate. After 9/11, Congress passed the Patriot Act, which expanded the ability of the government to pry into the lives of its citizens. Even in 2001, the government had very sophisticated technology to monitor cell and internet traffic. Those capabilities have grown exponentially.

To add to the complexity of the situation, Americans are voluntarily providing massive amounts of information through mobile apps and social media usage. Those companies, in turn, package all of your data and sell it, with your permission, of course. The government cannot take your data in violation of the Fourth Amendment and various privacy laws, but it can lawfully buy it.

The Covid pandemic has revealed the natural tendencies of governments to impose authoritarian measures on their citizens and reduce their freedoms. Although most Americans have started to return to normal life, there is momentum to the restrictions that the various governments had in place. Once a power is used by the government, it loathes to give it up.

This concept applies to surveillance as well. When a line is crossed by the government that it should not have, it makes it that much easier to cross it again. The United States is one of the few governments in the world that at least makes a show of not trying to invade its citizen’s privacy. Our freedoms depend on a government that engages in restraint. The more hyperbolic our political class becomes, the more we should fear overreach by the government. The abuses against Former President Trump and his campaign are prime examples.

At the beginning of his campaign, Trump claimed he was being spied upon. Most observers in the media dismissed the claim because they were operating under an old paradigm. Now it is accepted that the spying on his campaign happened. We need to get to a place where something like that becomes taboo again. Unfortunately, we are moving in the wrong direction. Unless privacy becomes of paramount importance to all Americans, we will inch ever closer to being like China or North Korea.