It has been argued time and again that privacy is a fundamental right. But as strong as this argument sounds, it is without a doubt a subject that raises eyebrows as far as its accuracy is concerned. That’s because Internet privacy as a fundamental right is drenched in skepticism. Is it really a right or simply an illusion whose reality excites just a few people gullible enough to believe that their privacy is guaranteed? The answer may not be certain. One thing’s for sure though. Everyone deserves it. It also appears that there is a problem with key players in the World Wide Web. This means one has to take a wholesome approach so as to analyze the current challenges, what the future holds and possible solutions to problems that either compromise or challenge Internet privacy.
This has everything to do with surveillance. In the US for instance, The National Security Agency monitors all phone records of US citizens as part of its mandate. The agency has unlimited access to both Internet traffic and phone records in the US and beyond. It can also hack any target it sees fit. Other countries like the UK also have such agencies. The big question here is – what if the data, held by these state backed agencies leak to malicious people or other agencies? Users eventually suffer. There is yet another concern that the aforementioned state backed agencies can use the data they hold for other motives which have little or nothing to do with safeguarding the national interest of their citizens.
It is hard to tell what will happen in the next decade or two as far as Internet privacy is concerned. One can easily predict a few things though. For instance, there will be expansion of surveillance in a bid to curb terrorism, cyber bullying, identity theft and hacking. There will also be an increase in data collection. This sounded absurd a few years ago. No one would freely give their personal information online and even offline. Today, people sign up for social media companies and ecommerce sites after giving their personal information without qualms. This is bound to happen more than it does today.
Several solutions have been suggested over time. The most convenient ones revolve around legislation. State owned agencies that can have access to personal information should face stringent legal control to regulate how they access and use personal information. That way, some of the most glaring dilemmas such as whether security triumphs privacy will be easily decided.
There are of course, other simple solutions you can embrace on your own. Be careful with the services you sign up for online. Then by all means, use private proxy servers. Such servers encrypt your Internet traffic making it impossible for third parties to snoop your activities. In a nutshell, your data is secure each time you connect to the Internet through a proxy server. Be sure to also update your password as often as you can. Then report to your local authority suspicious activities you come across online.