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Murray Rosenbaum Headshot

No Privacy

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As I sit in a free period at school, my best friend grabs my phone and tries to unlock it. After a few educated guesses (my birthday, my girlfriend's name and my name) she looks at me, and bluntly says, "What's your passcode?" "I'm not telling you, and it's not related to my life at all, so you won't get it," I responded. She begged and justified it with, "I just want to look at your pictures." I stood my ground and said no again. She pouted, and then in one last chance to annoy me took about 64 selfies (pictures of herself), and then gave me back my phone. As I sat, deleting ridiculously stupid photos, she asked me why I'm so protective of my phone. I tried to answer, but was only met with confusion at my own logic. No one else cared that much, and it wasn't like I had anything to hide. I soon realized that I hold my phone so dear to me because I have close to no privacy anymore. People can learn whatever they want about me on Facebook, there's images of me on Google Images, and apparently a website called milesplit has a profile for me including all of my best running times. In today's world, I feel as though I, and almost everyone, have very little to no privacy.

For instance, on the new 5S, there's a fingerprint scanner as an optional precaution for those who want to use it. When my dad got the 5S, the first thing I did when he wasn't looking was to put my fingerprint in. The added security technology gave my dad, and I'm assuming others, a false sense of security. That was shattered when I picked up my dad's phone, and he confidently said "You're fingerprint won't work, only mine" with a smug look on his face, which quickly dissipated when his phone "magically" opened for me. He opened his phone multiple times with his fingerprint, and then ordered me to do it. I opened it again, and I could tell that he felt as though the privacy of his phone was violated, and that it couldn't be safe if I could somehow open his phone. I let him freak out and worry for about five minutes, and then I enlightened him on how I put my fingerprint into his phone when he wasn't looking. What it proved to me is that people are so worried about privacy, that a phone could sell for $100 more just on the premise of better security.

Another extremely relevant example that made me fear for my privacy on the Internet ever so slightly was the unveiling of the NSA. The NSA had, and is monitoring the behavior of individuals on the Internet if they so wish. The NSA is what really shattered the illusion of being truly anonymous for me. The idea that I, someone who never truly did anything wrong, could be monitored for the possibility of doing something wrong, meanwhile having certain rights stripped away as a result of this unlawful surveillance. I feel as though having a Facebook profile is enough, but to have the government secretly monitoring the Internet takes away any ounce of privacy that anyone had left.

Going back to my original issue. I feel so protective of the information of my phone because I, and everyone else, live in a world where you're constantly connected, and anyone can learn whatever he or she want about you in just a minute. I didn't believe my brother when he said, "Welcome to the world of never being not connected" to me when I got my first phone, but that is exactly the world where we live today. Now excuse me while I go change all of my passwords.