Security Vs. Privacy : Should Edward Snowden Be Pardoned For Leaking
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Security vs. Privacy
Should Edward Snowden be pardoned for leaking thousands of classified NSA documents?
An analysis of the merits of the Snowden leaks and the broader issue of security vs. privacy and mass surveillance from the perspective of at least two ethical theories.
Following the terrorist attacks on 911, President George W. Bush signed into law The USA PATRIOT Act. Intended to enhance law enforcement investigatory tools, The Patriot Act the made changes to surveillance laws that enabled the U.S government collection of computer information about both American and foreign citizens. During the following years through a series of legislative changes and court decisions The United States National Security Agency was gradually granted the authority to collect information on a massive scale and to implement programs such as PRISM, which collects internet communications from at least nine major US internet companies such as Google, Facebook Yahoo and Apple , XKEYSCORE which gave the NSA the ability to secretly access databases containing emails, online chats and the browsing histories of millions of individuals, MYSTIC which allows to collect the metadata as well as the content of phone calls from several entire countries, as well as many other programs with similar mass surveillance capabilities . To put it in simple terms this, together programs essentially enables almost unlimited surveillance of anyone and everyone anywhere in the world regardless of that