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Morgan Isenberger

Mrs. DeVito
ELA 34H Per. 3
21 Apr. 2016

The Controlling US Government

Does the thought of the government potentially being able to spy on you through your own
personal phones terrify you? The US government has been finding ways to spy on their own
citizens and invade their privacy through their cellphones and other technology. The US
government controls their citizens privacy through technology by finding ways to monitor what
they do on their phones, by coming up with ways to legalize having an all the time surveillance
on the people of America through their electronics, and programs on the electronics.
The US government invades your privacy by using surveillance. “It was terribly
dangerous to let your thoughts wander when you were in any public place or within range of a
telescreen” (Orwell, 62). George Orwell, author of 1984, explains how a government that are
constantly watching over their people that it will create a type of fear among them, and they will
have this constant fear over them about being themselves. “BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING
YOU, the caption beneath it ran” (Orwell, 2). This quote from 1984 relates to how the US
government is always secretly trying to watch over their citizens and that they are watching your
every move. Oceania and Big Brother implanted telescreens everywhere so no one had any
privacy and they were being observed at all times (Orwell). In 1984 Big Brother had put

telescreens everywhere he possibly could in order to spy on his people, just like the US
government implementing surveillance devices to spy on its people. They want to have
surveillance on their citizens in order to be able to know what's going on at all times. “In the case
of the US, who strongly claim there is legal and judicial oversight in these things, it is still done
in secrecy; it is not clear how much personal data of ordinary citizens (of the US and rest of the
world) is caught in this” (Shah). In this article, it is making a vivid imagine on how even though
the government may deny committing illegal actions, they still have surveillance on what people
are doing, in secrecy.
In addition to that the US government monitors cellphones and other technology.
“Government, through National Security Surveillance Act (NSSA) C.N., have been wiretapping
cell phone conversations, often on random, innocent citizens who the government should have
no reason to believe these citizens would be involved in illegal activity” (Dowell). Even if a
person has given no reason to be suspected for illegal activities the American government still
taps in and listens to conversations people have on their phones. “There was of course no way of
knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment” (Orwell, 3). An excerpt from
1984 correlates with the US government invading people’s privacy because you have no idea on
when and why they are doing it. They could be watching or listening at any given moment.
“These leaks revealed a massive surveillance program that included interception of email and
other Internet communications and phone call tapping” (Shah). When all of this information was
leaked about the US government by Edward Snowden, a government technical worker, it proved
that the government was in fact, watching over innocent people through their cellphones and
what they sent on their emails and what they did on the internet.

Furthermore, programs are being watched and controlled by the US government. People who
use programs to get free software are particularly vulnerable to the FBI, because the FBI will
allow you to download small music programs at sometimes, but as soon as the police find you
guilty of something and need evidence on you, the FBI will write a warrant for illegal music
downloads and any other things they find (Dowell). The government will use anything that you
do on the internet against you if it is in the slightest bit illegal. If the US government cannot find
you guilty of something and they need evidence they will use small stuff that the FBI will let
slide against you. They do this before you even have the chance to know and realize this is
happening. “The FBI keeps track of every message sent on the internet and every program a user
has downloaded” (Dowell). They keep a track record of everything you have possibly posted on
the internet for their own use and to have tabs on everyone's personal information. The US
Government and the National Security Agency (NSA) used the US's major social media
websites such as, Google, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to watch over people and gather
information about them (Shah). Not only do they use their citizens’ private information to spy on
them, they are now using social media programs to gather information on people.
All things considered, by coming up with ways to legalize having an all around
surveillance on the people of America through their electronics, finding ways to monitor what
they do on their phones, and by implementing and privacy-invading programs on the electronics,
the US government used technology and cellphones to invade their citizens privacy. They are
using all sorts of different techniques in order to have surveillance on what their people do when
using technology at all times. They use technology and other resources in order to know what
they do on their technology and to invade their personal information.

Works Cited
Shah, Anup. “Surveillance State: NSA Spying and more.” Global Issues. 07 Oct. 2013. Web. 29
Apr. 2016.
Dowell, John. “Technology Invading Privacy.” Michigan State University. MSU, Web. 10 Apr.
Orwell, George. 1984 Austin TX: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, © 1977 Print.