I emphatically believe the opposite. Data collection, storage, and manipulation is ever becoming easier. The only actual choice is between a society where we're lied to about surveillance, or one where surveillance is generally available. https://www.amazon.com/Transparent-Society-Technology-Betwee... laid out the case for this over 20 years ago.
Here are the realistic choices.
On the one hand, we can create any set of rules we want on paper. We can get governments to officially support it. We can be frustrated as those same governments do it ineffectively. And then watch as the rules meant to curtail monopolies get caught by regulatory capture and are manipulated to support the very organizations that they are theoretically supposed to punish. (Seriously, do you expect any secret service to not take advantage of what is possible? Have you heard of Snowden?)
Or we can choose the path recommended in https://www.amazon.com/Transparent-Society-Technology-Betwee..., accept that surveillance is real. And put the tools in the hands of the masses. This is already happening. See https://asherkaye.medium.com/do-you-know-this-man-7836e54abc... for a story of how a random person in a random photo was tracked down by an internet stranger using reverse image search with facial recognition. And the tools are only getting better and harder to stop over time.
I personally hate both futures. But I hate the first one more. And I see people like you as unwitting pawns who are creating the first of those two futures. And your unwillingness to understand how things actually work, combined with your certainty that you've got the moral high ground, makes you an easily manipulated true believer.
Enjoy your certainty that you're in the right here. I guarantee that you'll have a lot to be upset about in the way that our world is shaping up.
A quick run down of some simple browser based extensions to give you back some semblance of privacy and security:
1. uBlock Origin - best open source ad blocker
2. Ghostery - stops you from being tracked as much as possible
3. Chrome UA Spoofer - Use chrome but set the user agent to firefox, this way custom exploits target the wrong browser saving you from being pwned
4. HTTPS Everywhere - Defualts sites to https if possible
A trained professional watching a single video feed will miss 90% of important activity after 20 minutes. There are 3 million CCTV cameras in the UK.
Like I said, no one is watching.
But automated surveillance is getting very good. A single server can currently run around 5 video streams. At least that was what Intellivid could do last I spoke with them. They do retail loss prevention. They're based in Cambridge and look like a good company for any hackers.
Very, very soon, all of these CCTVs are going to be "turned on". Computers will find anomalous behavior, identify people from their gait (how they walk -- surprisingly more reliable than face recognition), track them across multiple cameras even with large gaps in footage, etc.. Gunshot detection and localization is pretty easy, but goes beyond the camera systems.
There is a book everyone interested in the topic needs to read on the subject: The Transparent Society
The solution is not regressing. The systems are here.
The solution is openness. Almost all government CCTV feeds should be open to public view, for example.
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