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Seattle Times letters to the editor

December 12, 2013 at 7:33 PM

NSA spying reaches into people’s lives

Technology companies need to decide if it’s worth violating their users privacy to comply with agencies like the NSA

 National Security Agency (NSA) Director Gen. Keith Alexander testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on "Continued Oversight of U.S. Government Surveillance Authorities." (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

National Security Agency (NSA) Director Gen. Keith Alexander testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on “Continued Oversight of U.S. Government Surveillance Authorities.” (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

As recent news reports have stated, the NSA has been monitoring people’s activities for a while [“U.S., Brits spy on fantasy gamers,” page one, Dec. 10].

Now even virtual massively multiplayer online game worlds have been breached by the agency, and there is no telling how much further the fingers of the NSA have reached into the average person’s life.

While monitoring the many facets of Internet communications in the interest of safety is a good purpose, the corruption of this interest that happens makes it a complete violation of people’s right to privacy. The biggest problem with the NSA’s monitoring is that it’s assuming that everyone is to blame. People who don’t have any history of criminal activity and are law-abiding citizens are being treated like suspects of a crime that hasn’t even been committed yet. The vision of the U.S. is freedom and liberty, but the NSA monitoring treats the American citizen like an animal that cannot be left alone because it’s going to do something bad.

Technology companies need to ask themselves if it is worth violating their users’ privacy only to comply with agencies like the NSA. There is a growing market for secure, unmonitored Internet communications that companies should cater to. This would start a migration to a more private future for Americans and citizens worldwide.

— Bryce Partridge, Seattle

Comments | More in National Security | Topics: national security, NSA

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