What will be the fallout from the latest news from the Vault?
March 26, 2017
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Over the past few years, Wikileaks has been dumping previously confidential files by the metric ton. The sort of information they deal with cannot be leisurely browsed like a newspaper to discover the latest scoop. The massive amounts of documents they drop seemingly at random do not come with a summary, or any sort of instructions, and are instead left to the dedicated journalists and patrons to scour for some semblance of a narrative.
One thing has been made abundantly clear by the public reaction to Wikileaks: people really don’t care what is going on behind big, official closed doors. Whether by conscious decision or simply apathy, very little has been done the people in response to some rather shady dealings, such as Hillary Clinton’s collusion with the DNC prior to any sort of voting from its electorate. This sort of indifference needs to change with the new Vault 7 leaks, if not for our own benefit than simply to avoid a somewhat ironic predicament. Because while the populous may not care what the people in power are doing, they certainly seem to care quite a bit about us.
Vault 7 was a series of CIA leaks, starting on March 7th, that outlines some of the capabilities that the agency has possession of and has actively been utilizing since 2013. While it may not exactly be news to some people, the CIA can gain backdoor entrance into most every smart device and computer operating system. For a while now, many have suspected that the NSA can access personal information, and monitor activity and social media and such. The supposedly more paranoid citizens claimed they might also have access to cameras and microphones. But amid all the concerns about the NSA and Edward Snowden’s leaks, the CIA possessed all these tools and more the whole time.
So all those crackpot conspiracy theorists that were convinced the government was spying on them? Well, they may not have been correct, but they certainly weren’t as far off as many thought. It may be difficult to achieve mainstream acceptance for many of the leaked documents, but for the most part they are fairly irrefutable. The CIA actually confirmed the breach in security that was said to have led to the leaks, and while we will probably never receive an official “Hey, yeah, all those things Wikileaks said are true,” it is safe to assume that these alleged powers are well within their reach.
The real fear comes not from the monitoring of all your personal devices, but from the fact that practically at the flip of a switch the CIA can record and store any and all input from said devices. The creation of portfolios for each individual person starts to make people antsy, and with good reason; the feeling of any sort of privacy in one’s digital life is seemingly gone. And invasion of privacy aside (though it really shouldn’t be ignored), there are virtually no checks and balances in place to stop government agencies from doing this. And with more and more devices gaining “smart capabilities,” the possibilities for ways to track and affect our lives is only growing. So for now, keep any illegal plots and schemes to old-fashioned journals and blueprints, if you really wish to keep your nefarious plans a secret. Until the public actually cares enough to take some sort of stand against invasions of privacy, we’ll be stuck in the cycle of confirming conspiracies, feigning reaction, and ultimately keeping things exactly the same.