Unpleasant things can happen when one uses the internet. The internet is an open network and if one has an e-mail address, anyone can send whatever they like to that address. But there is also a hidden side that we normally are not aware of. It is something that happens in the background and even if many have all types of different kinds of protective walls, it does not prevent those who want to get into our computers.
That criminals are not only the only ones interested in your computer and what types of messages you send has long been known. There are also different authorities that have been interested in monitoring and registering what is said and from who to whom the messages go. In 2009, the government decided that Försvarets Radioanstalt (National Defense Radio Establishment – FRA) would have broad powers over signals of telephone and internet traffic. It has also been shown that telephone operators save customers’ private information.
The extent of this activity of monitoring traffic on the internet became more clear when Edward Snowden, in the summer of 2013, put forth evidence that the American NSA (National Security Agency) registered mobile and internet traffic worldwide. It also found that the Swedish FRA had worked in close cooperation with the NSA, and that many of the large internet companies, like Google and Facebook, delivered data to the NSA.
These large internet companies, like Google, Facebook, and Amazon, in turn register a lot of information about all of its many millions of customers that they primarily use for advertisements. There has also been considerable discussion around this in the past year. How has this affected people’s concern about being monitored and recorded on the internet? Do they feel that their privacy is threatened?