Snowden Answers Our Burning Data Collection Question: What’s The Worst That Could Happen?

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Re-blogging to read later. #productivity & #lifehacking with #wordpress

TechCrunch

National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden is answering the Internet’s burning questions. Surprisingly, he was even gracious enough to answer my question: “What’s the worst and most realistic harm from bulk collection of data? Why do you think it outweighs national security?”

Snowden, who was granted protection in Russia from American prosecution, has been somewhat press-averse, only holding a few select media interviews. This time, he went directly to netizens to respond to President Obama’s big national security speech last week.

I posted the full response Snowden gave me below. In essence, he argues that the government’s bulk storage of our digital lives causes self-censorship and opens up the potential for severe abuse.

“Study after study has show that human behavior changes when we know we’re being watched. Under observation, we act less free, which means we effectively *are* less free,” he wrote.

He also notes that mass-spying…

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