What Is More Important: Our Privacy or National Security?

Katie McGee, Writer

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In recent years, due to the constant growth and advancements in technology, a highly debated topic is the privacy of our personal information. These personal details are used to make purchases in which we enter our credit card numbers, addresses, phone numbers, etc. We take pictures, include exclusive information about ourselves, and communicate with one another while sharing information that may pertain to only ourselves or our family. However, should these aspects remain private to us? Who should be allowed to view our background information? Is this protecting the security of our nation?

One of the main reasons police are able to look into the private information of certain people is to protect the citizens of our country from being put at risk. Many people send out threatening messages or attempt to steal other’s information through online scams or hacks. One of the only ways to safeguard us from this is through criminal’s background information checks that can be read by the authorities, whether it is the government, law enforcement, or a police department. However, this data should only be available to these authority figures to keep our nation as safe as possible.

Of course, law enforcement can abuse the privacy of individuals without the proper permission to do so. Nevertheless, law enforcement is required to get a warrant. Without the police or other responsible agencies, it would be extremely difficult to legally search through someone’s personal information. On the other hand, with the correct validation, law enforcement has the ability to track down one’s private statistics, which can, in turn, be used to inspect a crime scene for a possible suspect.

In my opinion, we as citizens have the right to keep our lives private; however, our nation should be kept safe through this process. I firmly believe that the security of our country trumps that of our personal privacy because without national security, we would be at an even greater risk of having our personal information stolen through hackers or scammers. However, I believe it’s important to regulate exactly what law enforcement has the right to look through when investigating a crime. By balancing our security correctly, we have the ability to keep our lives private while keeping our country safe and secure, without having to give up one or the other.